Rotten apples left at Met Police HQ to represent officers linked to violence against women and girls

Refuge CEO Ruth Davison speaks to ITV News outside New Scotland Yard

More than 1,000 rotten apples have been left outside New Scotland Yard in a protest against the number of Metropolitan Police officers linked to violence against women and girls.

A board asking 'How many more?' was put up alongside the rotting fruit at the Met's headquarters on Friday morning in a demonstration by domestic violence charity Refuge.

A total of 1,071 apples were delivered to the site to reflect the number of Metropolitan Police officers who have been, or are currently, under investigation for allegations of domestic abuse or violence against women and girls.

The charity tweeted: "The police are failing to protect women and girls when misogyny is rife within its own forces.

"How much more needs to happen before crimes against women and girls are taken seriously?"

On Friday morning more than 7,000 signatures had been added to an open letter from the charity to Home Secretary Suella Braverman demanding "immediate changes are made to the policing system to protect women and girls."

The stunt outside New Scotland Yard comes in the same week Metropolitan Police officer and serial sex offender David Carrick pleaded guilty to 49 offences against women, including 24 counts of rape.

Refuge accuses the police of "catastrophic failures" that led to Carrick "being able to join the force, stay in the force, be promoted and given access to guns and abuse the authority his job gave him to harm and silence women."

"This cannot be allowed to continue. We need you to implement change, and that work needs to start today."

The charity questions in the letter why Carrick was able to join the police when domestic abuse allegations had already been made against him.

"Why was he able to pass intake vetting? Further reports were made while he was a police officer, yet nothing happened," Refuge writes.

Carrick was only suspended from duty in October 2021 when he was arrested for rape, and his pay was stopped in December 2022 when he admitted the majority of the criminal charges he faced.

The former officer was finally sacked from the force on Tuesday.

  • ITV News reports on the sacking of Metropolitan Police officer David Carrick

Assistant Commissioner Barbara Gray, the Met’s lead for professionalism, said earlier this week that Carrick’s 18 years of offending was "unprecedented in policing" and apologised to his victims for failing to rout him out of the force.

"We should have spotted his pattern of abusive behaviour and because we didn’t we missed opportunities to remove him from the organisation," she said.

Refuge has a confidential freephone, 24-hour National Domestic Abuse Helpline: 0808 2000 247

It was one of the biggest news stories of our time - and it's still not over. So what did Boris Johnson know about Downing Street’s notorious parties?

With fresh revelations from our Number 10 sources, in their own words, listen to the inside story...