Tuesday, 12 September 2023, 13:15
A riot police officer in Spain has reported a woman protester for a non-consensual kiss that happened nearly six years ago.
The policeman was part of the deployment in a widespread crackdown on Catalonia’s illegal independence referendum on 1 October 2017 and denounced the woman for kissing him. She was apart of a row of protesters who tried to block officers accessing a polling station in Barcelona.
The referendum was called by the government of Catalonia and then suspended by the Constitutional Court - but an illegal referendum was held, which is now referred to with the numeronym; 1-O.
The officer, who himself is being prosecuted for the charges during the secessionist incident almost six years ago, has included as evidence in his complaint a video in which the kiss can be clearly seen.
The complaint was filed on Monday 11 September by the officer before the Court of Instruction 7 of Barcelona, the same court that last January prosecuted 45 National Police officers for the charges during the 1-O.
In his written statement, the officer said that he was part of the deployment against 1-O in Barcelona and that the alleged sexual assault took place in front of the polling station that had been set up in the Central Services of the Department of Education of the Generalitat, in Via Augusta 202, and where pro-independence supporters gathered to prevent the intervention of police.
Amid the shouting and pushing the police officer claims that at one point "an unknown person surprisingly, inappropriately, suddenly and without consent kissed me on the mouth".
"At that moment (of the kiss), the ballot boxes had just been removed from the centre and - while the officers began to withdraw amid shouts, insults, aggressions and harassment - a woman of about 60 years of age approached me, insulted me, and on observing that a camera was close to both of us, grabbed me by the neck and the riot helmet she was wearing with both hands, surprisingly immobilising me and bringing my head close to hers to subsequently kiss my mouth with hers," the court heard.
The law official explained in his complaint why he did not act at the time. "All of this - he recalls - took place in an atmosphere of extreme violence" and, according to the officer, the woman, beyond the "libidinous spirit that may have pleased her", was looking for a "reaction that would serve as a trigger for a situation of violence".
In his complaint, the police officer asked the judge to "identify the defendant" as the first "investigative step" and presented the video of seven minutes and 38 seconds from Arabic news channel Al Jazeera. The riot police offcer also asked the judge, as a precautionary measure, to impose a distance of 1,000 metres between the woman and the complainant, and a ban on communicating with the officer by any means.
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