Stephen Lawrence’s mum says nobody holds ‘brutal’ Met Police to account
he mother of Stephen Lawrence says the Metroplitan Police is not being held properly to account as “nothing much has changed” in the force in the 30 years since her son was stabbed to death.
Mr Lawrence, 18, was murdered in Eltham, south-east London, on the evening of April 22, 1993, in an unprovoked, racist attack carried out by a group of six white youths he did not know as he waited for a bus.
An independent review of the Met’s investigation of the case found the probe was riddled by failures, including “institutional racism”.
Three decades later, another damning review of the Met has again found the force to be “institutionally racist” – as well as sexist and homophobic – riddled with bullying, poor leadership and the “rotten” treatment of Black people.
In a new interview Mr Lawrence’s mother, Baroness Doreen Lawrence, despaired at the lack of progress in the force.
“I don’t know how many more inquiries and how many reviews you need to have to say the same thing – and still no changes, and still denials,” she told the BBC’s Reeta Chakrabarti.
“Officers [are] able to be as brutal as they want, and nobody holds them to account.
“And until that happens, there’s no way that the police are going to move forward.
“And they have to not do it behind closed doors – it needs to be seen publicly, what they’re doing, for people to accept that they’re going to change.
“Over the past – in Stephen’s case – 30 years, nothing much has changed.”
In the aftermath of Mr Lawrence’s shocking murder, the Home Secretary commissioned a report to be carried out into the way racially motivated crimes are investigated and prosecuted.
The dossier – dubbed the Macpherson report – was published in 1999, and concluded the police investigation into Mr Lawrence’s murder had been marred by, among other failings, “institutional racism”, and made a number of recommendations to “increase trust and confidence in policing amongst minority ethnic communities”.
The latest damning report – known as the Casey report – was commissioned in the wake of the kidnap, rape and murder of Sarah Everard by serving police officer Wayne Couzens.
Carried out by Baroness Dame Louise Casey and published last month, it revealed a shocking catalogue of racist, misogynistic and homophobic behaviour and abuse across the force, and warned there may be more officers like killer Wayne Couzens and serial rapist David Carrick.