A young Somali man falls to his death during a police raid
originally by 4WardEver UK
published 20th February 2006
Updates on this case are listed at the foot of this item
Nuur Saeed, aged 22, died on 24th January 2006 a fortnight after sustaining head injuries when he fell from a second-storey flat in Woolwich, London, after police had entered the property on a search warrant. A police spokesperson has said that on 10th January Nuur was in the property when officers attended. At 5pm the young man was found to be suffering from head injuries on the ground below the balcony of the second floor premises’, according to a police statement.
He was taken to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital and later transferred to Kings College Hospital where he died on 24th January from massive brain injuries.
Although the facts of Nuur’s death are yet to be established, many local community members and friends of the dead man allege that there had been a recent state of ‘siege’ in which the police have been harassing young Somali men following the murder in Bradford of PC Beshenivsky. They believe that this is in the wake of news that her alleged attackers are of Somali origin and from the Woolwich area.
A top-level external investigation was launched by the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) into the death that is being overseen by the IPPC’s deputy chair John Wadham. They will be seeking to establish how Mr Nuur Saeed fell, and whether officers followed correct procedure during the operation.
CCTV footage which captured Mr Saeed in mid-flight is being examined by investigators but the image quality is poor. So far police have maintained that they had no physical contact with the deceased young man. The Metropolitan Police are refusing to say why Plumstead officers obtained a search warrant for the address while the inquiry is ongoing. An inquest into his death was opened and adjourned on 27th January.
Members of the Somali community and supporters demonstrate at Plumstead police station on 15th February 2006 One of Mr Saeed’s friends, 20-year-old Zahra Mohamed, described how the news of his death left the Somali community stunned and angry. She said, “Nobody could believe it. Nuur was a good person, never in trouble with police and everyone loved him from children to old ladies. “He was a truly blessed individual.”
Nuur was an active member of the Somali community and worked with a youth project set up three years ago to help the Somali population in the borough to get jobs and training.
Hassan Ali who knew Mr Saeed from the project, said, “I saw him a couple of hours before the fall.”The next time I saw him he was in a coma. “I’ve spoke to Nuur’s family and they are very angry there have not been any answers to how he died yet.”
Asad Hussain of the Justice for Nuur Campaign said ‘Nuur was a normal, straight young boy. His home was raided by police officers from Plumstead police station and he was taken unconscious from his home. How could such a tragedy happen? The police clam that they had no physical contact but we need to know what took place.”
Some 600 people took to the streets of Plumstead on 4th February to protest over the death of Nuur Saeed. The Somali community in the Woolwich area of London has been in deep shock following his death. As the protestors arrived at Plumstead police station they chanted “Justice for Nuur” and “Our reality – police brutality.”
The events surrounding Nuur’s death are clouded with mystery and his family are simply demanding to know the whole truth. The explanation so far provided by the police is said to simply not add up.
‘Insufficient evidence’ over fall
21 July 2006
Somali community demands justice for Nuur Saeed
11 February 2006
Man dies during police operation
2 February 2006