Theo is a young man who was victim of police violence. He was raped with a stick by one of the policeman. Footage of his beating up was released and showed how violent was the cops’ action. Theo decided to tell his story to a news channel.
I decided to translate what he says. If you see any error, tell me in the comments, please. There is what he said:
I am going along the path and I run into the youth of my neighborhood. When I am arriving there, policemen are coming at the same time. Then, the policemen say: “everyone face to the wall!” I remove my headphone, I don’t understand what’s going on. When I heard the tone of their voices, I told myself: “They are not kidding”.
I went face to the wall quietly and then a policeman hit me. I knew there were no camera in the place where we were. I told myself I had to struggle the better I can to move in front of the CCTV. When I was in front the cameras, I did not try to run away. I told to the policemen: “you tore my bag”. I got only insults from the cops.
I was turned 3/4 so I could see what they were doing behind me. I saw him taking his baton. He put in my butt voluntarily. I fell on my stomach immediately. I did not have any strength like if my body had given me up. I fell on my stomach. They handcuffed my hands in my back.
They told me: “Sit now!”
I told them: “I can’t sit. I can’t feel my butt anymore. ” When they brought me in the car, they hit me again.
They said: “put him in the middle !” They beat me up. They punched me. They clubbed me on my genitals. They spitted on me. They called me nigger, bamboula, bitch.
When we arrived at the police station, a policeman, who was already inside, told me: “sit down”. I answered: “I can’t sit, sir”. An other policeman tasked me: “can’t you sit?” I answered: “No, I can’t at all”. He told me: “Lay down if you can’t sit. However, we have to attach you to the bench. It is the procedure”.
The policeman, who was already there, saw I was in pain very much. He saw that I could not breath and I was in spasm very much. He said: “He needs to be brought to the hospital to get a surgery, it is serious”.
It is not the first time a story like that happened. It is very complicate to investigate police violence in France. There is very few data. Moreover, the public prosecutor’s departments work very closely with the police and they are not independent of the political power. Therefore, the temptation is very strong to bury the cases or to minimize them.
In Drancy, one man had the anus torn by a baton of cop in 2015. In court, the attorney general did not accuse of sexual assault the cops. the verdict will be given February 20.
Even for Theo, the attorney general did not want to investigate for sexual assaults. It generated a public outrage. Even the very conservative mayor of Aulnay-sous-Bois (the city of Theo), Bruno Beschizza, expressed his indignation publicly. It is worthy to note that he used to be the former leader of the right-wing police-officer union “synergie-officiers”. After this, the attorney general decided to backpedal and to investigate a cop for rape. The three other ones are investigated for aggravated voluntary violence.
The failure of the French authorities to investigate cop violence was already highlighted by NGOs like Amnesty international. It is why a strong mobilization is required to pressure the French government. If international pressure could be added, it would help definitely.