COPS have released photos of 13 more people they want to haul in for questioning after the ‘Kill the Bill’ protests in Bristol.
In total, detectives are still searching for 18 people they suspect of being involved in the disorder – while 25 arrests have been made.
It comes after a protest in the city centre turned violent on Sunday, March 21. Further marches – each of which ended in violence – have since taken place.
Cops were assaulted by a “mob of animals” who attacked officers, set fire to police vans and hurled fireworks.
Around 40 were hurt, as well as one reporter.
Police initially claimed that some officers had suffered broken bones and collapsed lungs during the incident. It was later revealed that fortunately, no officer was seriously hurt.
Avon and Somerset Police said the investigation into the riots could be the largest in the history of the force.
During the protest, a mob shouted “Shame on you” as at least two police vehicles were set on fire.
Other vehicles were smashed up and daubed with graffiti.
Yobs armed with baseball bats also smashed glass panels of Bristol’s Bridewell police station while officers in riot gear and on horseback attempted to disperse the baying crowd.
Cops said numbers at the demonstration “very quickly” rose to as many as 3,000 people – while a group of 400 or 500 “were intent on violence, damage and criminality”.
Chief Superintendent Carolyn Belafonte said: “As we said from the outset, this will be a substantial investigation which has the potential to be one of the largest in our history.
“The fact we’re investigating 40 assaults on officers and a member of the media as the result of one incident shows the scale of wanton disorder which took place that night.
“Through painstaking work to examine more than two terabytes worth of digital footage, we believe we’re making clear progress to identify those responsible and anticipate further images will be released soon to the online gallery we’ve set up.
“One of the people we believe we’ve already identified is a suspect in the fire which destroyed a mobile community police station.
“We’d like to thank every member of the public who’s got in touch to provide footage, information or to pass on their well-wishes and kind thoughts.”
Releasing the images tonight, senior investigating officer DCI James Riccio said: “Our investigation is continuing at pace and we continue to make significant progress in what is a really challenging inquiry.
“We’ve had fantastic support from the public so far and for that we’re incredibly grateful.
“I’d like to once again ask for your help to look at our gallery and see if you recognise any of the people in the images.
“If you do, please contact us on 101 providing the call handler with the letter associated with the person or people.”
Who has been arrested so far?
In the time since the protest took place, police have arrested:
- Nine men, aged between 19 and 44, were held on suspicion of violent disorder during the incident
- Four women, aged between 18 and 20, were arrested suspicion of violent disorder in the days afterwards
- Two men and a woman – aged between 21 and 30 – were detained during Friday’s third Kill the Bill protest, again on suspicion of violent disorder. The two men were also arrested on suspicion of arson, and the woman on suspicion of assault
- On Saturday, officers arrested three men and two women aged between 19 and 30. All five were arrested on suspicion of violent disorder, with one of the men also detained on suspicion of arson
- A man and woman were arrested on Sunday, while a man and woman were also arrested today. All four were also detained on suspicion of violent disorder
The march was originally held in response to the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill, which gives forces in England and Wales more power to impose conditions on non-violent protests.
Protests deemed ‘too noisy’ or a nuisance could face tougher restrictions.
Speaking after the trouble, Bristol mayor Marvin Rees said: “Smashing buildings in our city centre, vandalising vehicles, attacking our police will do nothing to lessen the likelihood of the bill going through.
“On the contrary, the lawlessness on show will be used as evidence and promote the need for the bill.
“This is a shameful day in an incredible year for Bristol.”
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There have now been three Kill the Bill protests in Bristol in just a week. Each ended in violent clashes between officers and protesters.
Two more protests are planned for Tuesday and Saturday.
Bristol’s area commander Superintendent Mark Runacres has urged organisers to work with police to ensure there are no issues.