The Powell family have held a candlelight vigil in memory of Mikey Powell who was killed in police custody in 2003. The vigil took place outside the Thornhill Road police station, Birmingham, West Midlands.
Mikey’s cousin, Tippa Naphtali said; “This years candlelit vigil for Mikey’s 9th memorial was attended by family and friends from the local region and also further out. Special thanks to the Family of Anthony Grainger (Manchester) and Ken Fero (Migrant Media) who travelled from Manchester and London Respectively.
“Also in attendance was Tariq Jahan who lost his own son in the Birmingham disturbances of 2011. He paid tribute to Mikey’s mother and the many families that have been affected by custody deaths, and also made a presentation on behalf of the community to Mikey’s mother, Clarissa Powell.”
Tippa went on to call for greater community participation and support for the families of victims saying; “far too often supporters come and they go, they fail to maintain the momentum and extent of support that families require to get them through traumatizing and distressing circumstances.”
Mikey’s sister, Sieta Lambrias spoke about the personality and life of Mikey, and the plans for a spectacular 10th Anniversary event that the family are planning for 2013.
Kadeshi Burrell, of the Justice for Kingsley Burrell Campaign, spoke about their recent march in Birmingham and the successful release of Kingsley’s body after more than a yaer. Kingsley was finally laid to rest at the end of August 2012.
The families present were united in their resolve to continue taking actions to raise the profile of custody issues, and to build on the reforms that have been achieved in order to make progress and eventually reduce or stamp out custody deaths entirely.
The history of Mikey’s case:
Mikey died after police knocked him down with a patrol car, discharged more than four times the recommended amount of CS spray on both Mikey and his friend, and hit him with a police baton. Up to eight officers held him down on the ground for at least 16 minutes and then took him to a police station and not a hospital.
Related Article (archive):
Mikey Powell’s family struggle on
By Harmit Athwal 15th September 2011