> UWE student detained following a dawn raid by Police on Bristol home
Avon and Somerset Police searched the Bristol home of and arrested a UWE criminology and sociology student, in a dawn raid on December 18 last year.
Paul Saville, 25, was detained in connection with an alleged attack on a police horse, said to have been caught on CCTV during the student protests on November 24.
Several items of property were also seized from the St Andrews address; including Paul’s laptop, mobile phone, note-books and the coat he is said to have been wearing at the time of the alleged incident.
Paul was held for twelve hours by the police, ten of which were spent locked in a cell before questioning. He was shown footage supplied by BBC Bristol of him “Stroking a police horse when a fire work was shot at the police.”
In interview with The Guardian, Paul alleged that he was “Refused access to a solicitor, denied a pen and paper, a phone call and two of his three meals while he waited to be questioned about the incident.”
On the events of that day, he claims it would have been impossible noted the impossibility of being able to ignite and throw the firework with one hand while stroking the horse.
No direct comment has been made by the police regarding this particular event. Although, the Avon and Somerset Constabulary website made allegations of certain groups during the protests. One update claimed that “From the outset it became clear that some of the group intended to disrupt the city centre.”
After his release Paul proclaimed his innocence via updates on his blog and Twitter page supplying the video of the incident (the link for which can be found below). Saville wrote on his blog:
“They accused me of conspiracy to affray. They said that, I was stroking the police horse so that someone else that I knew could throw a firework at the police. This also of course was completely untrue.”
Paul has been detained for other disputed incidents before. In 2009 he was arrested for using water soluble chalk to write messages on a pavement at Broadmead. He was charged for causing criminal damage worth £5000 with politically charged slogans such as: “Liberty. The right to question it. The right to ask: Are we free?” and “As the buildings go up, the wages go down.”
Since Paul’s arrest in December, WesternEye has learned that there was no evidence to suggest that Paul had attacked the horse and no further police action is to be taken in relation to the incident.