Sprinter Ricardo dos Santos stopped by seven armed Met Police officers two years after 'racial profiling' row
An athlete who was allegedly racially profiled during a stop and search has said he was pulled over for a second time by seven armed police officers while driving home in London
Athlete Ricardo dos Santos published a series of tweets and video footage of him being pulled over and questioned by police on Saturday.
Dos Santos said officers believed he was on his phone when they stopped him, and claimed one officer took his baton out of his pocket “out of frustration ready to smash the glass” after not knowing how to open the car door.
He added that “nothing had changed” two years after he was pulled over with his partner, Bianca Williams, and their daughter.
In a series of tweets, the sprinter said: “Not surprised I had to go through this again. Whilst driving home last night 7 armed @metpoliceuk officers stopped me because they thought I was on my phone whilst driving. At their request I pulled over when safe to do so.
“After I stopped two officers ran towards either side of the car, one fist clenched banged on my window and tried opening the car door. Not knowing how to use a Tesla handle he took out his baton out of frustration ready to smash the glass.
“Annoyed that 2 years down nothing has changed but they still manage to over police. Why do 7 armed officers need to be present when I was alone. 2 or 3 max would of been enough.”
He later said he had only shared part of the footage on social media as the rest is with his lawyer.
In July 2020, footage of dos Santos being searched and handcuffed was widely shared on social media, with his girlfriend later accusing the police of racially profiling them.
After the search, details of the couple’s three-month-old baby were also stored on a police database called Merlin, used to record information on children who become known to the authorities.
In April, police watchdog body the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) said an acting police sergeant and four police constables will all face a gross misconduct disciplinary hearing over the incident.
In response to the incident on Saturday, the Met confirmed that the stop took place as they were “concerned the driver may be using a mobile phone at the wheel”.
The force said in a statement: “We are aware of footage on social media showing part of a stop on a car.
“At about 04.00hours on Sunday, 14 August, armed officers were on routine patrol in a marked police vehicle.
“They saw a car travelling eastbound on the A40 Westway and were concerned the driver may be using a mobile phone at the wheel.
“The officers clearly indicated for the car to pull over but it failed to do so and they called for further assistance. The driver stopped about five minutes later in Orsett Terrace W2, and the officers spoke to him about why they wanted to stop the vehicle.
“Following the conversation the vehicle was allowed on its way. We have since contacted the driver via Twitter to invite him to contact us if he would like to discuss this matter further.”
In a later statement, the Met confirmed the incident has been referred to the IOPC.
A spokesperson said: "In relation to a vehicle stop in Orsett Terrace, W2 on Sunday, 14 August, we have now recorded this matter as a public complaint.
"We have also referred it on a voluntary basis to the Independent Office for Police Conduct, recognising the public interest.
"We await their views on how they may wish to take this forward."