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Actions Against The Police

Actions against the police claim for police assault, false imprisonment and malicious prosecution: R.B.-v-British Transport Police (“BTP”)


R.B. received nearly £100,000 in compensation from BTP after being attacked by a police dog on multiple occasions, wrongfully arrested and prosecuted. David Phillips and Partners solicitors represented him throughout.

R.B. travelled by train to watch Everton play Stoke in Stoke-on-Trent. After the game he was taken on a coach to the railway station. He was hungry, so decided to leave the station to find some food. On his return he was told by a police officer with a dog that he would not be allowed access. R.B. repeated his appeal to be let in, but the officer refused and set the dog on him, biting him once on his right leg and twice on his left leg. The dog was then pulled back and R.B., who had suffered nasty injuries, was arrested for violent disorder.

R.B. was taken to North Staffordshire Hospital where he spent 6 days as an in-patient having surgery and skin grafts to his right leg.

He was prosecuted for a public order offence, for which he ultimately accepted a bind-over after several appearances at court.

David Phillips and Partners solicitors’ actions against the police team advised R.B. to pursue a claim for police assault, false imprisonment and malicious prosecution. We filed R.B.’s claim with BTP. They responded by saying that R.B. had been involved in a fight, and that they used reasonable force.

Proceedings were issued in the actions against the police claim to which BTP formally denied liability. Following a 20 day trial the jury found that the police officer with the dog did not act unreasonably in allowing the dog to bite R.B. the first time. However, he failed to restrain the dog, causing 2 more bites, which the jury felt was unreasonable. They also determined that R.B.’s arrest was unlawful, and that the police pursued a malicious prosecution in respect of the public order offence.

The jury awarded R.B. damages of £93,545.55 plus full legal costs, justifying David Phillips and Partners solicitors’ determination to take R.B.’s actions against the police claim all the way to trial.

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