Although the identities of the 6 SPG officers, one of which killed Blair Peach have been published before in David Ransom’s book and in the Sunday Times, it’s worth repeating the names as they were redacted in the recently released Cass report (after the police sat on it for 31 years!):
Inspector Alan Murray was in charge of Number One Unit SPG on the day of Peach’s death. He resigned from the force in the Summer of 1980 to join his brother in a jewelery business in Scotland. He is now now a lecturer in corporate social responsibility at Sheffield University.
The other officers in the van were PC Anthony Richardson who had been with the SPG for six months; PC Michael Freestone, who claimed he was transferred out of the unit because it was “politically expedient; PC Raymond ‘Chalkie’ White, the van driver; PC James Scottow believed to have told Peach to get ‘on your bike’ after the blow and Sgt Anthony Lake who was driving a second van.
A PC Greville Bint, part of Unit One, is understood not to have been among the officers whose identities was redacted. He gave conflicting evidence to the original inquest about where he got in and out of the van at the time of Peach’s death.
During a search of SPG lockers Bint was found to have been in possession of a lead weighed plaited leather covered stick, Nazi regalia, bayonets, German awards and medals from the first and second world wars. he was transferred out of the riot squad to Brixton in June 1979.
Note: Alan Murray has come out as ‘almost certainly’ Officer E, the one thought to land the blow, although he denies that. Obviously Blair just headbutted a random flyby cosh then?
And sadly although the Met claim it is a different police force now, the sad assault and death last year of Ian Tomlinson and the actions of the police like Derek Smellie at G20 tell otherwise – from the SPG morphing into the Territorial Support Group to new ‘sus’ laws, kettling, terrorist Islamaphobia and restrictions for photographers.
More reading also at Modernity Blog.