The Mayor of Lewisham has added to criticism of police filmed using “excessive force” to arrest a black woman in the area.

Damien Egan said he was “shocked” by the footage, which showed six officers pinning down Kamyimsola Olatunjoye, 28, as she shouted “I can’t breathe” on May 9.

Following an anti-racist protest outside Lewisham police station on Wednesday, the Mayor revealed meetings he has met with police to ensure an investigation is carried out. 

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In statement on Friday, Mayor Egan said: “Lewisham prides itself as being an open borough that celebrates our diversity and has a history of standing up against racism.

“We know many residents, like us, will have been appalled at the videos from the United States of the killing of George Floyd. 

“Racism and racial inequalities are not just an ‘American problem’.

“Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) inequalities are endemic in the UK too.

“We have been shocked by images of police using excessive force to arrest black people in Lewisham in recent weeks and we have been meeting with the police to ensure these instances are investigated, and that we receive information, by ethnicity, relating to the increase of stop and search during lockdown.”

The Independent Office of Police Conduct has launched an investigation into Ms Olatunjoye’s arrest, who was charged with obstructing a drugs search.

The video appears to show an female officer punching Ms Olatunjoye multiple times as she shouts "release your arm".

Police say a matter of assaulting an emergency worker was not proceeded with.

She was travelling as a passenger in a car that failed to stop for police, Scotland Yard said.

Protestors gathered outside Lewisham police station on Wednesday, calling for the officers involved to be suspended. 

A spokesperson for the police said: "Officers on proactive patrol in Lewisham on Saturday, May 9, attempted to stop a vehicle on Lewisham High Street at 11.05pm.

"The vehicle attempted to make off after officers signalled for it to stop. It became blocked and the male driver and female passenger were detained.

"Both were searched under section 23 of the Misuse of Drugs Act and subsequently arrested.

"Police are aware of videos circulating on social media showing the arrest and are liaising with local community groups and forums to discuss any concerns that they might have regarding this incident.

"The matter has since been referred to the Independent Office for Police Conduct."