At approximately 4:10 am on 30th December 2009 James was on his way home from a night out with friends. He went over to say hello to two young girls, but one pushed him away aggressively. After an exchange of words she then went on to attack James several times. This is clearly seen on CCTV. Later the girls, in a separate incident, incited three men to attack James and his group. As James turned to walk away he was attacked and punched repeatedly to the face and head. The attacker, aged 47 and over 18 stone, was fuelled by cocaine and alcohol. James tried to defend himself. By this time he had been beaten to the ground with his attacker on top of him. James was screaming at his attacker, “Get off me, get off me.” James’s friend saw the man on top of James, James’s face was full of blood, he ran over and punched James’s attacker twice to the side. The attacker paused. As James was hauled to his feet he instinctively kicked out once and only once. The whole violent incident lasted a matter of seconds. Consequently the following happened to James:
An intoxicated off-duty police officer led James to a nearby doorway. On a 999 call, the off-duty police officer is heard shouting at James, “f***ing stay there you.” On arrival of the police this off-duty police officer claimed James had attacked the other man.
James was immediately treated as the aggressor by the police. He was supported to the police vehicle and arrested on suspicion of assault, the time was 04:20. The police then allowed everyone else to leave the scene. Tragically, the attacker died. At 08:45 James was cautioned and arrested for murder. From then on he was incarcerated and held incommunicado for three days. Subsequently James was subjected to highly emotive, incorrect and biased police press releases and hostile internet forums. Despite his injuries he did not receive any immediate first aid.
None of James’s assailants were cautioned or charged by the Police or the CPS despite CCTV evidence showing several attacks on James. Yet one of the other three assailants admitted to being armed with a weapon, a metal bar. The off-duty police officer became the ‘pivotal’ witness for the prosecution. However, this officer declined an immediate statement because he claimed, “he could not remember where he had been and had been drinking.”
James had been attacked, forced to defend himself and because of his injuries, was concussed, dazed and unable to fully assess what was going on about him.