Tottenham riot: burned out shops may contain dead bodies, MP David Lammy warns .By Michael Howie Telegraph August 7, 2011
26 police officers were injured in the unrest and 42 people were arrested for offences including violent disorder, burglary and theft following overnight clashes.
Mr Lammy today said the area had had its “heart ripped out” by the rioting and said there may even be fatalities in the burned out buildings, he said.
He said: “A community that was already hurting has now had its heart ripped out.
“The post office, shops, news agents, mobile phone shops, council building that deal with customer complaints, smashed to pieces by mindless, mindless people last night – many of whom are not from Tottenham and had come from afar into this community intent on causing violence.
“What happened here raised huge questions and we need answers, but the response to that is not to loot, to rob. “There are homeless people standing back there. We don’t know if there are fatalities within some of those homes and flats which are now burned out. This is a disgrace.” “There are homeless people standing back there. We don’t know if there are fatalities within some of those homes and flats which are now burned out. This is a disgrace.” “There are homeless people standing back there. We don’t know if there are fatalities within some of those homes and flats which are now burned out. This is a disgrace.” Missiles, including Molotov cocktails, fireworks, rocks and fire extinguishers, were thrown at the police. Scotland Yard said at least one of the officers had suffered head injuries. Trouble flared after members of the community took to the streets on Saturday night to demand “justice”, after Mark Duggan, 29, was shot dead on Thursday. Community outrage spins into street riots last night in North London. Theresa Monuro, 54, a support worker, said: “I’ve lived in Tottenham 20-odd years and I’ve never seen anything like this. “They were burning everyone’s property. It’s disgraceful.” Mounted police and officers in riot gear took to the streets as smoke poured from the lighted bus. After sections of Tottenham High Road were cleared of protesters, “pockets of trouble” continue to flare in nearby areas, a Scotland Yard spokesman said. Two vans were reported to have been set ablaze in nearby Rheola Close, and Sky News said that its reporter and cameraman had to withdraw from the area over safety fears. There were also reports of looting in Tottenham Hale Retail Park. Cries of “the police want to see the place burn”, greeted Mr Lammy’s speech. Claire Kober, the leader of Haringey Council, also addressed the crowd from behind the cordon but was shouted at by angry local people. She said: “I walked along the High Road this morning and it’s nothing short of heartbreaking… “Our next job is to rebuild Tottenham. I urge the community to stick together and work towards rebuilding. “We will work with you. This violence needs to stop.” A spokeswoman for London Ambulance Service said paramedics had treated 10 people, and nine were taken to hospital. The violence erupted after around 120 people marched from the local Broadwater Farm area to Tottenham police station on Saturday, forcing officers to close the High Road and put traffic diversions in place. After night fell, two police cars parked about 200 yards from the police station were set upon. Deputy Mayor for policing in London Kit Malthouse told Sky News that officers had coped “with the cards they were played very well” and insisted they were adequately prepared. “Nobody predicted the level of violence, arson and looting that was going to take place,” he said. “Nobody thought that the protest would necessarily degenerate into that kind of activity and there’s no reason why they should have done. “The critical thing is, were we able to mobilise forces fast enough to deal with what did arise?” He added: “We did get a significant number of officers out there to deal with it in good time.” “Officers from the Territorial Support Group have been deployed to disperse the crowd. They are deployed to the north and south of Tottenham Police Station in the High Road, and are subject to bottles and other missiles being thrown at them by the crowd.” A family friend of Mr Duggan, who gave her name only as Nikki, 53, said the man’s friends and relatives had organised the protest because “something has to be done” and the marchers wanted “justice for the family.” Some of those involved lay in the road to make their point, she said. “They’re making their presence known because people are not happy,” she added. “This guy was not violent. Yes, he was involved in things but he was not an aggressive person. He had never hurt anyone.” As the scenes of violence escalated, local MP David Lammy appealed for calm, saying in a statement that the events were “not representative of the vast majority of people in Tottenham”. He added: “Those who remember the destructive conflicts of the past will be determined not to go back to them. “We already have one grieving family in our community and further violence will not heal that pain. “True justice can only follow a thorough investigation of the facts. “The Tottenham community and Mark Duggan’s family and friends need to understand what happened on Thursday evening when Mark lost his life. To understand those facts, we must have calm.” A spokesman for the Mayor of London Boris Johnson urged those involved in the violence to “respect the rule of the law”, adding that “violence and destruction of property will do nothing to facilitate this investigation”. Commander Stephen Watson of the Metropolitan Police, which has set up a gold command room in Lambeth to oversee the incident, stressed that “a significant number of police officers” had been deployed to the scene, telling BBC News: “Our people are very well trained and led. We are exercising contingency plans which are well rehearsed.” He added: “Our intention is to restore calm and normality to the area as soon as possible.” He said there would be arrests for criminal offences, but that they came second to preserving public safety. Commissioner Rachel Cerfontyne, of the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC), said in a statement: “I understand the distress that the shooting of Mark Duggan has caused to his family and in the community and that people need answers about what happened to him.” She said the IPCC yesterday supported 14 family members and friends in formally identifying Mr Duggan’s body, and would have further meetings with his family today. “We are still gathering evidence and will release further details about our progress with the investigation as soon as we can.” On Friday, it emerged that Mr Duggan had been travelling in a minicab and was gunned down after an apparent exchange of fire. A police officer’s radio was found to have a bullet lodged in it afterwards, suggesting they may have narrowly escaped being struck. Officers had been attempting to carry out an arrest under the Trident operational command unit, which deals with gun crime in the black community, according to the IPCC. The troubles evoked memories of 1985, when a police officer, Pc Keith Blakelock, was hacked to death following a riot in Broadwater Farm, where the marchers set off from on Saturday. Missiles, including Molotov cocktails, fireworks, rocks and fire extinguishers, were thrown at the police. Scotland Yard said at least one of the officers had suffered head injuries. Trouble flared after members of the community took to the streets on Saturday night to demand “justice”, after Mark Duggan, 29, was shot dead on Thursday. READ FULL REPORT HERE -