source: Edinburgh News
published: 4 January 2019
Trainee gas engineer Sheku Bayoh, 31, died in May 2015 after being restrained by officers responding to a call about a man with a knife in Kirkcaldy, Fife. A weapon was later found nearby.
Last year it emerged no prosecutions were to be brought in relation to the incident following an investigation by the Police Investigations and Review Commissioner, which was passed to the Crown Office.
Aamer Anwar, the solicitor representing the Bayoh family, said race had been the “elephant in the room” throughout.
He said: “Sheku’s family believe his behaviour was totally out of character. He was under the influence of drugs and his family believe whilst police have the right to defend themselves, any use of force has to be at all times lawful, reasonable and proportionate.
“The family subsequently learned Sheku was not carrying a weapon at the time the police arrived, he did not use a knife on the police, nor was one ever found upon him.
“Despite an attempt to smear Sheku after his death through ‘police source leaks’ to the media, he did not attack police officers with a knife or a ‘machete’. The family also now know Sheku did not attack the police first, but that he was attacked by them not once, but several times even though he had not acted violently. It was following this that a police officer was injured.”