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Statement from Commander Musker on Notting Hill Carnival

News   •   Aug 26, 2019 22:57 BST

Statement from Commander Dave Musker, the Met’s lead officer for Notting Hill Carnival 2019.

Following the conclusion of Notting Hill Carnival 2019, Commander Musker said: “Carnival is one of London’s best attended events, celebrating the diversity of this amazing city and everything that it stands for. The weekend brings together a wide range of people from all over the Capital, and beyond - and we have worked closely with the event organisers to ensure that everyone who attends has a safe and enjoyable time.

“We would like to thank all those who took to the streets to celebrate everything that the Carnival stands for in a kind and considerate manner, however a small number of people attempted to ruin the event by bringing dangerous weapons with them.

“Thousands of officers worked some very long shifts in over 30 degree heat this weekend to keep visitors safe and I am extremely proud of their dedication, professionalism and positivity; especially with the weather conditions being particularly challenging. Without their hard work and commitment, Notting Hill Carnival would not be able to go ahead.

“Although I am happy with the smooth running of the festivities, I am, once again, extremely disappointed that a number of people feel that they can assault my officers who are working in very difficult circumstances to try and protect everyone in attendance. Officers put themselves on the frontline and should, under no circumstance be assaulted for protecting the public. We will adopt a zero tolerance approach to any assault on police officers.

“It is for reasons like this that I authorised a section 60 Criminal Justice and Public Order authority across the Notting Hill Carnival geographical area and areas of Harrow Road on the Monday (26 August). My job is to ensure everyone participating and attending can enjoy Carnival safely and the use of this authority provides reassurance to communities that we are constantly working to keep them safe.

“I have been very clear these orders are not used without detailed analysis of intelligence and where appropriate and proportionate and the seizure of offensive weapons provides Carnival goers and the wider public an insight into my decision to authorise a Section 60.

“The use of this authority should provide reassurance to our public that the Met are constantly working to keep them safe and should send a clear message to those intent on bringing weapons to Carnival, that we will do everything in our power to stop them and arrest them. I want to emphasise that Section 60 is used as a preventative power.

“We also increased the number of screening arches to deter those who may have been planning on coming to the event, armed with an offensive weapon.

“I am very pleased with the results of the screening arches and the Section 60 order; a number of offensive weapons were taken off the streets by my officers and a total of 353 arrests were made over the course of the weekend, which we expect could rise.

“I would like to thank our colleagues at the British Transport Police and City of London Police for their support over the weekend. I would also like to thank our colleagues at London’s Ambulance Service for their hard work in looking after carnival-goers who had suffered injuries and dehydration in the extreme heat.

“The smooth running of this year’s event also would not have been possible without the support of all our partners, especially the Notting Hill Carnival organisers who we have worked very closely with.

“We will continue to review our security measures and have a post-event debrief to ensure that going forward, Notting Hill Carnival is a day that is enjoyable and safe for everyone attending.”

As of 22:00hrs on Monday, 26 August, there have been an overall total of 353 arrests across both Carnival days. On Sunday there were a total of 111 arrests, and on Monday there has so far been 242 arrests.

Breakdown of overall total:

37 x Assault police
2 x Drink drive
2 x Criminal damage
31 x Public order
34 x Offensive weapons
10 x Theft
162 x Drugs
10 x Sexual offences
5 x Robbery
5 x GBH
14 x ABH/ Common assault
40 x Other

As of 22:10hrs, 30 Met police officers have suffered minor injuries at Notting Hill Carnival.