CCTV of police elbowing man in cell leads to investigation calls

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Media captionNeville Edwards told BBC North West Tonight what happened

CCTV footage showing police elbowing a man in a cell has led to calls for an investigation by the police watchdog.

Neville Edwards, 31, also claimed he was punched as he was restrained following his attempt to strangle himself.

Greater Manchester Police (GMP) said officers were "required to use force to restrain the individual and remove his clothing for his own safety".

The area's mayor Tony Lloyd called for the matter to be investigated "fully".

Mr Lloyd, who is also police and crime commissioner in Greater Manchester, said: "It is clear this footage will cause legitimate concern to the public and GMP need to provide reassurance that policing... is carried out to the highest standards."

He said he would ask Chief Constable Ian Hopkins to refer the incident to the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC).

Image caption Neville Edwards said he "needed somebody to sit there and bring me back down to earth" in the cell

The matter came to light after Edwards, who was found guilty at Manchester Crown Court on 14 January of causing actual bodily harm, posted footage of the police cell incident online.

Edwards, who says he has a personality disorder and depression, said he was arrested after "buying a kebab" and that he was not drunk.

He admitted he had a criminal record and that he was tagged, but said he was "compliant" with the conditions at the time of the arrest.

Talking of the incident, he said: "I needed somebody to sit there and bring me back down to earth... not four people to come in and to start putting the boot in."

'Officer bitten'

Assistant Chief Constable Garry Shewan said full footage of the incident was provided as evidence in court after Mr Edwards was charged with assaulting a police officer.

The officer was "seriously bitten... leaving him with scars and permanent damage to his arm, and requiring blood tests over a number of months", he said.

He said all officers were trained in restraint techniques, "some of which I accept may appear quite shocking when viewed out of context".

GMP had not received complaints about excessive use of force, he said.

Mr Shewan said the force would review the circumstances and was planning to meet Mr Edwards, who is due to be sentenced on 10 March.

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