Four police cars turned up at Henry Hicks mural painting
- Credit: Archant
Four police vehicles and at least six officers turned up in Holloway on Good Friday to quiz the grieving sister of Henry Hicks over the painting of a mural she had full permission for.
Claudia Hicks, 23, was approached by two officers while accompanying the artist painting a large mural of her brother Henry – who died when his scooter hit a parked car in Wheelwright Street in December, while police were following him.
Miss Hicks says that once the two officers had been shown a letter of permission for the artwork, they called for another two officers and she was eventually surrounded by three police cars and a van as well as senior officers, all of which she captured through video on her mobile phone.
An ongoing investigation by the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) is looking into the role of police officers who were following the 18-year-old on the night of his death.
“It was harassment,” said Miss Hicks.
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“First of all two officers turned up asked if we had permission so I showed them the letter and they called for another two officers and another car turned up.
“It was just me and the man that was doing the art work.
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“Then they called for a police van. There was a whole group of officers there, asking the man why he was doing the painting.
“Then the superintendent and the sergeant turned up. There must have been about 10 or 12 officers who came up.
“I said ‘is this the normal procedure for someone painting a wall’? It’s obvious it’s because of who I am.
“Fair enough if two officers came to check we had permission but this was just ridiculous.”
Since her brother’s death the IPCC investigation has issued four police officers, the two drivers and their passengers in cars following Henry on December 19, with gross misconduct notices.
The commission said the misconduct notices do not imply guilt, but let officers know their behaviour and conduct are under investigation, and the level of severity.
The mural was painted just yards from a wall which has been a sea of flowers and tributes since the teens death, but was also emblazoned with graffiti reading “police killed Henry Hicks” shortly after the teen’s death.
On Saturday thousands of demonstrators marched from the Hicks family home in Liverpool Road to Islington Police Station in Tolpuddle Street demanding answers from the investigation.
“I was filming them asking why they were all here and they were being really submissive.
“It was quite embarrassing, I’m standing there with 12 police officers and people I know are driving past me. That’s the place where my brother was killed, that’s where all the flowers are.
“I don’t want 12 police officers there firing questions at me when I’m doing nothing wrong.
“We had permission from the company that own the prison electricity box and we made sure it was OK with the council.”
Islington Police are yet to officially comment on the incident.