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Man admits attacking police officers during Bristol riot

Custody image of Gopal Clarke
Gopal Clarke

A 24-year-old man has admitted attacking police officers during the riot in Bristol last year.

Gopal Clarke, of Kingswood, South Gloucestershire, pleaded guilty to a charge of violent disorder moments before he was due to stand trial for riot when he appeared at Bristol Crown Court on Monday (6 June).

He will be sentenced on Thursday, 28 July.

To date, seventeen people have been jailed for a combined 65 years and five months for offences committed outside Bridewell Police Station on Sunday 21 March, 2021.

Footage collated and examined during our investigation showed Clarke kicking officers on multiple occasions during the incident as well as throwing an object at them from close range and forcibly taking one of their batons with the help of another member of the public.

It also showed him using a police shield to ram officers and to strike several of them on the head with force.

Det Supt James Riccio said: “Gopal Clarke, like many of those who have already appeared at court charged in connection with the shameful events in Bristol last spring, has admitted his conduct was criminal.

“He violently attacked police officers with the very equipment they carried to protect themselves as they tried to maintain public order.

“Many of those officers feared for their safety as they tried to contain the likes of Clarke and many subsequently went home to their families injured.

“Such behaviour will never be tolerated and his admission of guilt is likely a result of the compelling evidence investigators have compiled against him.”

We’d like to remind all concerned that criminal proceedings relating to the events of Sunday 21 March are ongoing against other defendants and that they have a right to a fair trial.

It is extremely important there should be no reporting, commentary or sharing of information online which could in any way prejudice these proceedings.