'Police is a safe haven for thugs' Nicole Smallman and Bibaa Henry's mum calls for change


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In June 2020, Nicole Smallman and Bibaa Henry were found murdered in Fryent Country Park, North West London. BBC Two documentary Two Daughters tells the story of the sisters who were killed by 19-year-old satanist Danyal Hussein whilst celebrating Bibaa’s birthday. The documentary also explores the horrific revelation that two Met police officers took and shared photos of the bodies of the murdered sisters. Speaking to Express.co.uk and other press, Mina Smallman called on the Met to tackle a toxic culture within the police force.

Deniz Jaffer and Jamie Lewis were each jailed at the Old Bailey in December for 33 months.

In the wake of Sarah Everard’s death by serving police officer Wayne Couzens in March 2020, then Met police commissioner Cressida Dick spoke about their being a new “bad’uns” in the force.

Mina remarked: “You remember they always talked about the one rotten apple and I just found that so irritating because all of us who have a brain know that if you have one piece of rotten fruit, in a fruit bowl, what happens? It all gets contaminated.

“Wake up Cressida. I think what has happened is something’s gone wrong with the vetting.”

“Something’s gone wrong with monitoring and accountability and what I think has happened is that the police has become a safe haven for thugs,” she continued.

“So basically, you tell your mate, ‘Come and join the police they can’t touch you mate. You can do whatever you like,’ and that is the kind of little cell group of poison because Jaffa, he was a mentor and he sent the pictures of the girls to his mentee.

“So what does that say? That’s saying you, I’m baptising you in the toxicity of our organisation, do you want some?”

When Nicole and Bibaa were reported missing, the police failed to search the park. Instead, tragically, Nicole’s boyfriend discovered the bodies.

Mina is convinced if her daughters were white, the police would have instigated a search of the park.

Discussing the police, she added: “I get upset on behalf of people who do their job and do it well.”

She said she has since made friends with [DCI] Clive Driscoll who reopened the case again for Stephen Lawrence.

“We can’t keep on revisiting the same thing, just saying the same thing over and over again,” she warned when speaking on how things should change.

“The Met was told to apologise to me, you need to be told? That’s another story.

“What we need is for people to accept the term institutional racism.

“There’s a real aversion to using that term because they feel it will denigrate the entire institution but until they call it what it is, it will continue.

“It’s not admitting to being or having institutional racism in your organisation, it is part of the healing. You have to disinfect, a corrupted scar and it hurts like hell, it’s painful.”

Mina explained: “You feel like you’re washing your dirty linen in front of everyone but I tell you when you do that, you see good things.

“We’ve got to stop covering up the darkness because that’s where it flourishes – we have to expose it.”

The first Black female archdeacon in the Church of England added: “I don’t believe that things can’t be reformed and changed.

“But we have to keep our foot on the pedal because it takes energy and it takes a desire to enact and change things. Things just don’t change overnight. I have more faith in the police than probably people think I do.”

In reference to Nicole and Bibaa’s case, a representative for the Metropolitan Police told Express.co.uk: “We have apologised wholeheartedly to Bibaa and Nicole’s family for the actions of PCs Jaffer and Lewis. Their behaviour was utterly repugnant and horrifying to us all and they are in prison because of it.

“PC Lewis was dismissed without notice and it was determined that former PC Jaffer, who had resigned, would have been dismissed without notice had he still been a serving officer.

“Part of rebuilding trust is making it impossible for such behaviour to be seen as acceptable, telling the public where we have got it wrong and what we are doing about it, and removing officers who have behaved in such an awful way. The Independent Office for Police Conduct and others thoroughly scrutinise our actions.

Two Daughters airs on BBC Two on Sunday at 9pm.

Victim Support is dedicated to supporting victims of crime and traumatic incidents in England and Wales. More information can be found here. Reclaiming These Streets aims to make the streets a safe space for women and Million Women Rise is a Black women led collective of women resisting all forms of male violence against women and girls.


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