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  1. ITV Report

Police officer found not guilty of assault after Tasering race relations advisor

Judah Adunbi was Tasered in the face by a police officer in Bristol. Credit: ITV West Country

An Avon and Somerset police officer has been found not guilty of assault after Tasering one of the force's own race relations advisor in the face in Bristol in January 2017.

Judah Adunbi had frequently been mistaken for a suspect, a court has heard.

Members of Avon and Somerset Police wrongly identified Judah Adunbi as a man with an arrest warrant against his name on several occasions before and after Acting Sgt Claire Boddie unlawfully discharged the weapon on January 14 2017, Salisbury Magistrates' Court was told.

Boddie, 47, believes she used reasonable force when she Tasered the 64-year-old in the street outside his Bristol home and was standing trial after denying assault by beating.

Richard Posner, prosecuting, said Mr Adunbi became increasingly frustrated and swore at officers when they approached him at around 9am as he walked to his back door off Colston Road in the Easton area of the city, because he had been mistaken for a suspect before.

He refused to identify himself, as was his legal right, but a scuffle ensued and he was hit in the jaw with the Taser, the court heard.

Claire Boddie with the Taser during the incident in Bristol in January 2017. Credit: ITV West Country
  • "I heard a noise. Then it felt like my head was frying."

There were gasps of "Oh my God" from the public gallery, which was packed with supporters of Mr Adunbi as they watched footage of their friend falling to the ground from the blow.

Giving evidence, Mr Adunbi said: "I heard a noise. Then it felt like my head was frying."

The footage shows that, as Mr Adunbi fell to the ground, a bystander who was filming the incident, can be heard telling the police: "That was totally uncalled for and unnecessary."

At this point Mr Adunbi throws his wallet on the floor, pointing to it and repeatedly yelling at officers: "There's my ID, check my ID, why won't you check my ID," before giving his full name.

Mr Posner said: "He made it clear it was not him. He wasn't under arrest.

"He was upset and swore at the defendant.

"There was no good reason for (discharging the Taser).

"It was not in self-defence, it was not in defence of PC Darren Weston, and in doing so Claire Boddie demonstrated an unlawful use of force to affect an arrest."

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To recap: Avon and Somerset Police acting sergeant Claire Boddie has been not found guilty at Salisbury Magistrates' Court of assault after Tasering the force's own race relations adviser Judah Adunbi in the face after mistaking him for a suspect.

Judge Ikram said: "The issue for me is whether the prosecution have persuaded me that she didn't act in self-defence.

"The prosecution failed to persuade me and she is found not guilty of assault for that reason."