Third ‘Kill the Bill’ protest sees more violence between police and protesters yesterday

Third ‘Kill the Bill’ protest sees more violence between police and protesters yesterday

Hundreds of people gathered in Bristol yesterday for the third ‘Kill the Bill’ protest against the new Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill, which restricts people’s rights to protest under the Covid-19 restrictions.

The scenes yesterday saw a police horse being covered in paint, bottles and bricks being thrown at officers, fireworks being thrown at police horses, and lasers shone in officers’ eyes.

Protesters also sat down in front of a line of police outside New Bridewell police station in the south-west city.

Police officers in riot gear blocked off the road to the police station, which was vandalised during the first protest on Sunday, in which chaos erupted and officers were injured.

Ten arrests were made last night.

So far, nine people have been arrested in connection with the violence and vandalism which took place on Sunday.

15 arrests were made as a result of the second ‘Kill the Bill’ protest on Tuesday night.

Protesters yesterday shouted “ten years for protest, five years for rape” and “justice for Sarah”, referring to Sarah Everard who was murdered by a member of the Metropolitan Police at the beginning of the month.

Many marchers held daffodils and chanted “peaceful protest”.

Those sitting outside the police station chanted for police officers to lower their riot shields.

The Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill, which is currently going through Parliament, would give police in England and Wales more power to impose conditions on non-violent protests.

Anything deemed “too noisy” or a “nuisance” can be restricted under the new legislation, with convicted protesters facing a fine or time spent in jail.

Chief Superintendent of Avon & Somerset Police, Claire Armes, said: “Once again, we remind everyone that we’re still in a pandemic which has cost many lives and remains a significant challenge for our colleagues in the NHS.

“We have all sacrificed so much to stop the spread of this terrible disease and we’re so close to a relaxation of the restrictions, when protest will again be possible.

“In Avon and Somerset we remain committed to facilitating peaceful protest when it’s safe and lawful to do so, however gatherings remain a breach of Covid-19 restrictions and risk increasing the spread of coronavirus.

“We urge you not to come.”

Several Tweets posted yesterday showed the reaction of the police towards protesters, and even members of the press.

Avon and Somerset Police Superintendent Mark Runacres told BBC Breakfast this morning that police would use the “appropriate measures” for Covid-19 restrictions being broken.

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