Police launch race hate probe
25th November 2020

Taunted for his turban: Police launch race hate probe into video showing boys attacking Sikh pupil

  • Footage shows Sikh schoolboy being set upon by two others of a similar age
  • Charlton School, Telford, Shropshire, confirmed incident happened after school
  • West Mercia Police said they are treating the distressing incident as a hate crime 

Police have begun a hate crime investigation after this video footage showing a Sikh schoolboy being attacked went viral on social media.

Posted on Twitter and Facebook, it shows the boy, in uniform, being set upon by two others of a similar age as he walked home after class.

During the fight, the victim is grabbed in a headlock and his turban is left hanging off. 

Others are heard laughing at him, before the boy is pushed to the ground, pinned down and punched repeatedly on the back of the head.

Charlton School in Telford, Shropshire, confirmed the incident, after school on November 13, involved ‘a number’ of its students.

Footage posted on Twitter and Facebook shows the Sikh schoolboy being attacked at Charlton School in Telford, Shropshire

The victim had been walking home after class when he was set upon by two others of a similar age

It said it had ‘taken swift, immediate and appropriate action, including sanctions and targeted intervention for the perpetrators’.

The school is co-operating fully with police, it added. 

‘Although this incident did not take place during the normal hours of the school day, we have taken full responsibility for working with all students involved, and the wider school community, to prevent any further such incident from occurring.’

West Mercia Police said: ‘This is clearly an incredibly distressing incident. We are treating this as a hate crime and with the utmost seriousness.’ 

Superintendent Jim Baker added: ‘The boys involved have been identified and our inquiries are continuing. I know the video has caused significant concern amongst our communities.’

The victim is grabbed in a headlock and his turban is left hanging off as he is pushed to the ground

West Mercia Police is treating the attack as a hate crime and their inquiries are continuing

Jaz Gill, founder of the charity Hope – Helping Out People Everywhere – has been in touch with the boy’s parents, but said they did not wish to discuss their son’s ordeal.

‘It’s a shocking incident,’ he said. ‘I’ve had feedback from around 100 people who contacted the school – many were upset that the school had seemingly not acted on this until word spread on social media in the last few days.

‘People are very upset and some want the two boys to be expelled but this should be an opportunity to educate people so that incidents like this don’t happen in the future.

‘Children need educating on what racism is and what bullying is – how these things can impact on the victim’s mental health.’

Tanmanjeet Singh Dhesi, Labour MP for Slough, said: ‘Bullying and anti-Sikh hate cannot be tolerated.’

The National Sikh Police Association described the incident as an ‘absolutely disgusting’ attack’.

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