The Way

The Way

2010 ‧ Drama/Comedy-drama ‧ 2h 3m

The Way Profiles
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  • About

    An American father travels to France to retrieve the body of his estranged son, who died while attempting the pilgrimage to Spain's Santiago de Compostela. He resolves to take the journey himself, in an effort to understand both himself and his son.

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3343977 Koshka Duff: Professor says she faced victim blaming over police claim

Number of words : 1098 Number of sentences : 45 Number of paragraphs : 1

A professor who won an apology from Police over sexist language during a Strip Search has said she feels like she has been On Trial for eight years.

Dr Koshka Duff was arrested in 2013 after trying to help a black teenager who was subject to a stop-and-Search .

She told The Bbc it was " dehumanising" - and she had experienced a " barrage of victim blaming and gas lighting" as she pursued a claim against Police .

She Said she faced flashbacks and Panic Attacks for years after.

Dr Duff - Now an assistant professor of politics at the University of Nottingham - was trying to give a " know your rights" legal advice card to a 15-year-old boy in London when officers accused her of obstruction and arrested her. The Boy was found to have a knife, which Dr Duff had not been aware of when she intervened.

She was taken to Stoke Newington Police Station , where she was strip searched.

On CCTV footage, officers can be heard laughing about her hair, clothes and talking about her underwear. In one clip, one officer references a smell And Then a different officer says " Oh, it's her knickers".

Dr Duff - who was 24 at The Time - Made a civil claim against the Metropolitan Police for The Way she was treated and and " sincerely apologised" for the " sexist, derogatory and unacceptable language used".

In her first broadcast interview since The Apology , That she was " terrified" as she was pinned down by three officers, had her hands cuffed behind her back, legs tied together and clothes cut off.

" While they were doing That they were cracking jokes with each another, for example about the benefits of strapless bras when they were talking about whether to cut off my underwear. The overwhelming feeling of it was physical pain and I was terrified.

" They were kneeling on me with their full weight and they had my hands in cuffs and they were jerking them around behind my back. My wrists and arms were completely Cut Up from this, I had quite extensive injuries. "

She Said she had been told by officers That the Strip Search was as a way of trying to identify her, as she would not tell officers who she was.

But She Said : " I don't see how stripping me would reveal my identity in any way apart from they wanted to soften me up, to kind of intimidate me into telling them my details, and to Punish Me for Standing Up for a young person's rights.

" And One of the officers who arrested me called me a 'Bleeding Heart leftie' and 'some sort of socialist'. "

Speaking about CCTV footage she managed to obtain years after The Search - That showed officers laughing about her hair, saying her clothes stink and talking about her underwear - Dr Duff said " it was really clear they were trying to humiliate me" and the comments were " a peephole into culture of misogyny".

" They called me childish. When I was being arrested I was called a 'very silly girl'.

" The sexism of The Way they were treating me was really obvious at The Time . I guess it was very dehumanising language. "

In November 2013 she was acquitted of assaulting a Police Officer and obstructing a Police Officer . However, Dr Duff continued to make a civil claim against The Met Police for The Way she was treated.

As part of the misconduct proceedings, She Said she was " grilled for hours".

'I was terrified'

Asked about the impact of pursuing the complaint for eight years, She Said : " The Process of going through this complaints procedure - I've just felt like I've been On Trial for eight years. . I've just experienced a barrage of victim blaming and gas lighting. "

She added: " One of the things I found particularly distressing over The Last eight years is they have continually used the fact That My Body tensed up during the Strip Search as a justification for having used more force. Because they said, 'oh you clenched your fists and you were holding your arms rigid'. I was terrified and My Body was kind of seizing up. "

" What I've experienced over The Past eight years is a legal system which is absolutely Set Up to protect The Police from accountability and to prevent complaints from getting anywhere, to just disappear them into a bureaucratic abyss. "

She also referenced the murder of Sarah Everard by a serving Police Officer in 2021, which led to a discussion on confidence in policing

Dr Duff said: " After The Rape and murder of Sarah Everard, The Police put out statements saying women should challenge officers they think are behaving in a dodgy way, kind of again putting the onus On Women in a victim blaming way, saying you know, if you don't challenge them and stand up for your Legal Rights then That 's The Reason you might be raped and murdered.

" On The Other hand if you do stand up for your Legal Rights and in solidarity with those of others, then I've seen The Way you get treated for That . "

The Metropolitan Police has compensated Dr Duff.

Inspector Andy O'Donnell, of The Met Police directorate of professional standards, said: " I would like to take this opportunity to sincerely and unreservedly apologise for the sexist, derogatory and unacceptable language used about yourself and for any upset and distress this may have caused.

" There's a hope That this settlement and the recognition of the impact of What Happened will enable you to put this incident Behind You . "

Ongoing investigation

Dr Duff - who has written a book on abolishing The Police - accused The Met of deflecting public scrutiny " by presenting what they did to me as an exceptional incident".

But She Said she was " really happy That The Conversation is happening right Now about misogyny and normalised sexualised violence in policing".

In a statement on Tuesday, The Met said: " In November 2021, The Met settled a claim following the arrest of A Woman in Hackney in May 2013.

" We have sincerely apologised to the complainant for the language used while she was in custody and any distress caused.

" Following the conclusion of the civil claim, allegations of misconduct relating to these comments were referred to our directorate of professional standards and are currently being investigated.

" This investigation remains ongoing. "



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