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'Perhaps he got his five minutes of fame': 13-year-old sentenced for 'viral' attack on police officer

Jimmy Nsubuga
·3-min read
PC Andrew MacPherson and PC Reem Ali were attacked during the incident in Hackney on 20 June (Picture: Twitter)
PC Andrew MacPherson and PC Reem Ali were attacked during the incident in Hackney on 20 June. (Twitter)

A 13-year-old boy has been sentenced for attacking two police officers in an “unprovoked” attack.

The teenager, who can not be named for legal reasons, admitted kicking an officer’s head, hitting and poking another officer and shouting abuse during the assault.

PC Andrew MacPherson and PC Reem Ali were attacked during the incident in Hackney on 20 June, as was one member of the public.

The assault was filmed and later went viral on social media.

While the beating was taking place, the boy took a selfie of himself and the men grappling on the ground, a court heard.

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The boy admitted the assault (Picture: Twitter)
The boy admitted the assault. (Twitter)

Paul Kabemba, 33, Jordan Thomas, 20, and Marvin Henderson, 34, from Hackney, north-east London, were also arrested after the incident, along with the 13-year-old.

The boy admitted two counts of assaulting an emergency worker by beating at an earlier hearing last month and was handed a nine-month referral order at Stratford Youth Court on Wednesday.

The trio of men will be sentenced at Wood Green Crown Court on 10 July.

The boy claimed he thought he was helping another man who he saw in a headlock and was scared after seeing allegations of police brutality towards ethnic minorities.

Prosecutor Varinder Hayre said: “PC Ali was kicked in the leg by a large male who is another defendant in this case. [The teen] kicked PC Ali on the back of her right knee causing her leg to swing forward.

“The police officers were aided by a member of the public carrying a baseball bat who tried to diffuse the situation. PC MacPherson also used a spray on the four defendants.

“His phone was seized and viewed by police. [The teen] filmed it in close up as he was filming the officer.”

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PC MacPherson suffered a bloody graze on his shoulder, suffered muscle pain in his chest and back and pain in his ribs. PC Ali escaped without serious injury.

The court heard the teen was interviewed the following day and made full admissions to his part in the assault.

Hayre also read out victim impact statements from the officers.

PC MacPherson said: “I won’t describe myself as upset at any point and walked away without significant injury. I find disappointment and sadness at the actions of a 13 and 20-year-old.

PC Ali added: “People want five minutes of fame now and perhaps he got the five minutes of fame he wanted.”

The teenager gave a letter of apology to the court, and said: “I’m sorry for my actions.”

The boy also has to pay court costs of £307 including a victim surcharge of £100 each to the police officers.