Mother to Kenyan man assaulted by British police speaks of son’s battle with mental illness

Black Lives matter
A protest in the US by people of African descent. [Photo: AFP]

Days after a public uproar following police brutality meted on a Kenyan man Wycliff Cox living in Essex, UK, his mother has spoken out.

Cox’s mother told Daily Nation in an exclusive interview that the incident happened shortly after requesting for an ambulance to wheel her son to hospital.

Cox according to his mother has been battling a mental illness.

She said that she was shocked to see police going to her house in Colchester town instead of an ambulance which she had requested.

 “He has suffered from mental illness for a long time. On that day, he went into a mental crisis so I called an ambulance for him to be taken to hospital, but turned up instead. No ambulance came,” she told the Nation on Tuesday.

“When I asked the police why they were arresting my son, they said he had skipped bail. That was when they started kicking and punching him in the head and ribs. They also broke his nose. There were seven police officers.”

Following the disturbing video, the Kenyan government wrote to the British government demanding immediate investigations into the incident.

“The High Commission has already communicated with the UK government, raising the Government of Kenya’s concerns on the unnecessary force on an unarmed man,” the Kenyan High Commission in London said in a statement.

Cox, 24, had been arrest over a crime he committed and was granted bail.

When he was released, his mother says he could not understand what bail is nor the crime he committed because “he was mentally indisposed”.

Efforts to explain to the police all this fell on deaf ears. She said that “the police do not care about his health condition as they say they are not medics.”

Following the incident, a UK citizen, Mia Kearns who runs  38 Degrees launched a campaign seeking justice for the family.

“We want to bring the justice Wycliffe and his family deserves after he was brutally assaulted by police and pinned down from head to toe as they saw him as threat just because of his mental health and the fact he did try to run away despite the fact he was just scared and was possibly unaware of what was going on or what to do he did breach his bail but this still does not give an excuse for someone to be treated the way he did!” Kearns who is running the campaign stated.