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Bristol riot detective makes renewed appeal on BBC Crimewatch Live

Burnt out police van after arson

One of the lead detectives investigating the riot in Bristol in March last year appeared on BBC Crimewatch Live this morning to make a further appeal for the public’s help.

Detective Inspector Peter Walker appeared live on BBC One calling for people to contact the Major Crime Investigation Team if they could identify any of the remaining people on our online gallery.

The gallery was created two days after the incident outside Bridewell Police Station on Sunday 21 March 2021 and features images of people we’d like to speak to about what took place which were recovered from mobile phone footage, CCTV and officers’ body worn cameras.

DI Walker said: “Over the past 17 months, we’ve received information about the identities of several people on the gallery and new images have also been added to it as the investigation has progressed.

“There are currently images of 22 people who we still need to trace and we continue to ask the public to contact us if they know who any of them are.”

The inquiry into the riot is one of the largest ever carried out by Avon and Somerset Police with thousands of hours of digital footage reviewed and 86 arrests made.

Of these, 47 people have been charged with offences including criminal damage, affray, violent disorder and riot with 20 of these jailed for a combined total of 75 years and 11 months.

DI Walker added: “Several police vehicles were damaged and set on fire, officers were assaulted and one of our neighbourhood police stations was vandalised.

“Many have already been held accountable for their actions and we won’t stop trying to find all those who took part in the disorder.

“The majority of the images on our website are very clear and I’ve no doubt there are people who will recognise those pictured.

“We believe they have information which could help our inquiry and I’d urge anyone who knows who any of them are to help us by contacting us online, via 101, or anonymously via Crimestoppers.

“Wanton violence and damage is never acceptable and we will not tolerate it. The events of 21 March last year are a stain on the city of Bristol and it’s only right those who carried out those criminal acts face the consequences of their actions.”

You can watch today’s episode of BBC Crimewatch Live featuring DI Walker’s appeal on BBC iPlayer.

If you can help us identify any of the people on our gallery, please phone 101 and tell the call handler you’re phoning in relation to Operation Harley, providing them with the letter associated with the person/people.

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.

You can contact the independent charity Crimestoppers 100 per cent anonymously on 0800 555 111 or via their Anonymous Online Form.

No personal details are taken, information cannot be traced or recorded and you will not go to court or have to speak to police when contacting Crimestoppers.