The Malta Independent 27 July 2017, Thursday

Court clears mother of all wrongdoing in confrontation involving police officers

Monday, 17 July 2017, 16:57 Last update: about 9 days ago

A court has cleared a young mother of all wrongdoing regarding a confrontation with police officers on a public bus in St Julian’s two years ago.

The incident occurred in August 2015 after the bus driver refused to have the woman, Polina Gutshabes, 27, on board without closing her pushchair, in which her child was sleeping.

The police arrived on the scene after Gutshabes’ husband went to report the incident at a nearby police station.

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The police officers then requested that Gutshabes accompany them to the station, which led to a scuffle, were an officer and Gutshabes received slight injuries.

Gutshabes would eventually be charged with having assaulted, threatened, and disobeying police officers; and disturbing the peace.

The court, presided over by magistrate Doreen Clarke, noted that the original arrest would have been illegal, as Gutshabes had not committed any offence up until that point, which meant that she was in her right to ignore police orders.

It was also noted that the incident occurred due to police officers mishandling the situation.

Lawyers Giannella DeMarco and Stephen Tonna Lowell were defence counsel.

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