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Last Updated: Wednesday, 16 August 2006, 16:38 GMT 17:38 UK
Pc cleared of hunt demo 'attack'
Countryside Alliance protest banner in Parliament Square, central London
Up to 20,000 people took part in the demo
A policeman has been cleared of hitting a demonstrator over the head with a baton during a pro-hunt rally.

Pc Barry Jenkins, 36, was found not guilty at Southwark Crown Court of causing actual bodily harm to Simon Harrap, a farmer from Farnham, Surrey.

The court heard Pc Jenkins was involved in a "violent struggle" when police lines clashed with protesters in Parliament Square in September 2004.

Mr Harrap suffered a head wound but could not remember when it happened.

'Uneasy at scene'

Pc Jenkins was part of the Metropolitan Police's Territorial Support Group called to control up to 20,000 people taking part in the Countryside Alliance's demonstration against a ban on hunting.

The court heard that at about 1530 BST trouble started as police tried to control the crowd.

Pc Jenkins described being held down "by two or maybe three people" and being "bent down from the waist".

He said there were missiles "flying over my head" and that he felt uneasy at the scene.

Fearing for his safety, he said: "I struck out, but I don't believe I hit him. I didn't feel anything. Normally you would feel if you had hit something."

Pc cleared over hunt demo punch
15 Sep 05 |  London

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