Met calls for bystanders to help officers not film them after video mocks violent attack on police

A senior police officer has called for the public to stop filming officers being attacked - and to step in and help instead.

His comments come after a video of a female police officer being kicked in the chest during an arrest in south London was shared thousands of times on social media.

The video showed the police woman being sent sprawling into the road where an approaching bus narrowly missed her head.

The video was accompanied by a commentary mocking the officers predicament. It has sparked outrage among the police.

Ken Marsh, chairman of the Metropolitan Police Federation. Credit: ITV News

Ken Marsh, chairman of the Metropolitan Police Federation told ITV News: "We're telling people, stop filming us and stop putting commentary to it and putting it out on social media as if it's some big joke. Because it's not.

"My colleagues lives were at risk."

Being filmed, whether on phones or dashcams, has become a fact of life for the police and footage can be useful in identifying suspects.

Passerby took selfies in front of victims of the Westminster Terror attack. Credit: ITV News

But, the police say, the public would be better using their phones to call emergency services.

Former police officer, Seb Ellis told ITV News: "That mobile phone is a great bit of equipment to get help to that police officer that's under attack. Instead of filming, why don't you phone 999?"

Being filmed is part of a days work for the police. Credit: ITV News

There is no law against filming emergency situations, but it has been criticised in court, most recently during the inquest into the Westminster Bridge terror attack.

Passersby took video of the events of 22 March 2017, while some people even took selfies of the aftermath that showed victims being treated by emergency services.

These graphic images were posted online, causing "real distress to the family" the inquest heard and representing a "rather shocking disregard for the dignity of casualties".