Child Q: Met Police officers who strip searched schoolgirl removed from frontline duties

Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now
The Met said the officers have not been suspended or placed on formal restricted duties, “but aren’t on local frontline duties at the moment”.

The two female Met Police officers who asked a 15-year-old black schoolgirl to strip her clothes off - while she was menstruating - have been placed on desk duties.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

A safeguarding report found the search of the teen, known as Child Q, was unjustified and "racism was likely to have been an influencing factor”.

The Child Q protest in Hackney. Photo: LWThe Child Q protest in Hackney. Photo: LW
The Child Q protest in Hackney. Photo: LW

It has now been revealed that the two officers who carried out the strip search have been moved to desk duties.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

The Met told LondonWorld that the officers have not been suspended or placed under formal restrictions, “but aren’t on local frontline duties at the moment”.

There have been several protests at Stoke Newington police station over the incident, and councillors have called on the Borough Commander to resign.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

The impact on Child Q from the strip search was “profound and ongoing”, the report said.

Her mother told how she was often found “screaming in her sleep” and her aunt said her niece was “a shell of the bubbly child she once was”.

Diane Abbott at the Child Q protest. Diane Abbott at the Child Q protest.
Diane Abbott at the Child Q protest.

Child Q said she didn’t know if she would ever feel normal again.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

When announcing the legal action, Child Q commented: “I want to thank the thousands of people across the world of all backgrounds who have offered me support following everything I’ve been through. I know I am not alone.”

The girl’s mum added: “We now look to the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) to make sure there is an effective investigation into the officers involved so they are individually held to account and face real consequences for what they have done.

“We expect the school to reflect on the findings of the City and Hackney Safeguarding Children Partnership report and take necessary action against all members of staff involved.”

Police at the Child Q protest in Hackney. Photo: LWPolice at the Child Q protest in Hackney. Photo: LW
Police at the Child Q protest in Hackney. Photo: LW

Commander Dr Alison Heydari at the Met said: “While we await the findings of the IOPC investigation, we have already taken action to ensure that our officers and staff have a refreshed understanding of the policy for conducting a ‘further search’ and advice around dealing with schools, ensuring that children are treated as children.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

“Alongside this, local officers have been briefed on the incident and are alive to community concerns.

“The report and its recommendations have been shared with our Specialist Crime Review Group and our Continuous Policing Improvement Command to ensure that all opportunities for wider learning are acted on immediately.

“We are in full agreement with the Safeguarding Review that this incident should never have happened.

“It is truly regrettable and on behalf of the Met I reiterate our apology to the child concerned, her family and the wider community.”

Child Q’s family has requested that there be no speculation as to their identities or the identity of Child Q’s school, which could result in Child Q’s identity becoming known.