As a last resort, a police officer ‘kicked Dalian Atkinson.’
Dalian Atkinson’s lawyer claims the ex-footballer was not immobile on the ground when he was booted twice in the head “as a final resort” after the police had exhausted all other alternatives.
QC for the defense Pc Benjamin Monk’s 33-second Taser deployment, according to Patrick Gibbs, was the clearest proof that it was administered by accident “in total confusion and panic.”
Prior to the death of former Aston Villa, Sheffield Wednesday, and Ipswich Town striker Atkinson in August 2016, prosecutors believe Monk used unlawful and disproportionate force out of rage.
Pc Mary Ellen Bettley-Smith, 31, denies assaulting Atkinson with a baton at his father’s home in Telford, Shropshire. Monk, 43, has pleaded not guilty to alternative allegations of murder and manslaughter.
Mr Gibbs told the 11-member jury panel at Birmingham Crown Court on Thursday that the evidence suggested Monk was scared rather than angry during the six-minute altercation with the former Premier League player.
“There was something about the manner he (Atkinson) presented himself in the street that prompted (a witness inside a house) take ballistic shelter and advise his wife to do the same,” Mr Gibbs told the court.
Mr Gibbs added: “Events go from 0-60 in about a minute flat because that’s all it took for his psychotic state to express itself, for the Taser to be deployed, and for Miss Bettley-Smith to hit her emergency button.”
Mr Gibbs claimed that after the first Taser shot had no impact on Atkinson, the ex-footballer destroyed a glass door panel at his father’s house, giving Monk “every reason to dread the worst.”
“He (Monk) wasn’t wrong to be concerned about the occupant,” Mr Gibbs told the jurors.
“From what we now know, if Mr Atkinson had gotten back into the house, this episode may have ended very differently.”
“He knew he was facing an aggressive,,” Mr Gibbs said of Monk during his submissions. (This is a brief piece.)