Questions are being asked today about the decision by police to break up a gathering in the memory of Sarah Everard in York.
The official Reclaim These Streets event was cancelled.
But at least 30 people went to York Minster yesterday evening (Saturday) to light a candle for Sarah, the York woman who was kidnapped and murdered on her way to her home in London.
One of them, Ewa Lelontko, said police appeared almost immediately.
And on Twitter, Miranda said: “Sarah Everard’s vigil in York was broken up by a swarm of cops who told us to go home or face serious consequences.”
Meanwhile in London, four people were arrested as police moved in to break up a vigil at Clapham, drawing widespread criticism.
Today, York Central MP Rachael Maskell told YorkMix: “Women want to come together not least here in York, the city Sarah grew up in.
“We want to stand in solidarity to share our sadness and our determination.
“Across the country women have been told not to gather, and to be off our streets at the very time we want to reclaim our streets.”
‘Aghast’ at actions
Keith Tordoff, who is standing as an independent candidate for the role of North Yorkshire Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner, criticised the policing strategy.
“I am aghast that the police both in York and at Clapham have not been briefed to observe from a distance, and be ultra sensitive to people wanting to pay their respects to Sarah Everard by holding a silent vigil.
“These are not protesters and the policing level should be proportionate. Not good for police public relations.
“The ‘police are the public and the public the police’. You never know when you will need their support and these situations diminishes that.”
A North Yorkshire Police spokesperson said: “The tragic death of Sarah Everard in London has deeply saddened everyone at North Yorkshire Police.
“Around 150-200 people attended a candlelit vigil outside York Minster on Saturday (13 March) evening in memory of Sarah.
“Officers allowed people to lay flowers whilst ensuring that the gathering took place in a safe and lawful way. No enforcement action was taken against anyone in attendance and most people had left the area by around 6.30pm.
“Our thoughts are with Sarah’s loved ones at this very sad time.”