Tilburg agents classified as ‘old-age smashers

Tilburg agents have been hindered this weekend in helping an underage girl, they write on Facebook. The cops were repeatedly called “old-age swindlers”.

The Tilburg police team links the incident to national demonstrations in recent weeks, some of which have “escalated”. On Facebook, the team writes: “More than 17 million people have their own thoughts. Sometimes, however, it is better not to speak out loud what you think.”

On Thursday a demonstration against the coronavirus measures got out of hand in The Hague. The protest turned out to be a confrontation between the police and demonstrators, in which violence was used on both sides. Afterwards, images were distributed via social media.

One of the many shared videos shows a seemingly older woman being beaten by the police and then falling to the ground:

What preceded this incident is not clearly visible on the images. If asked, the police say that it was a 66-year-old woman with her mobility scooter who blocked the road from mobile unit (ME) vans, which had to pass by urgently.

According to the police, the woman and her mobility scooter were moved to make room for the ME, on which the woman tried to bite the officers involved. She then received a “repellent tap”, according to the police. She was also arrested.

Fragments

At the end of June, police unions and the chief of police of the national police force drew attention to videos that circulate on social media and in which, according to them, the police are portrayed in a bad light. The reason was then another protest in The Hague, from the action group Viruswaanzin – now rechristened Virus Truth.

Corp chief Henk van Essen then spoke of “fragmentary images” that do not do justice to policemen. The national police still support that view, says a spokesman in a reaction to last Thursday’s images. “Such videos are fragments of what happened, often without context. Nine times out of ten something has preceded the incident, but people don’t start filming until it escalates. The cause is then not recorded.”

Research

On social media some people wonder whether the issue with the 66-year-old woman in The Hague could not have been solved less harshly on Thursday.

The Hague police do not want to say anything about this yet, because the use of violence is always first investigated by the police. Then the police check whether the violence was proportional. “Every action is evaluated and that’s what we’re going to do in this case,” says a spokesperson of the police unit in The Hague.

In addition, the police also investigated suspects who used violence against policemen on Thursday.