Journalists were arrested during a Just Stop Oil demonstration on the M25 in Hertfordshire.
Chief constable Charlie Hall has apologized for his officers’ behavior.
Review found no evidence that officers acted maliciously or were deliberately disproportionately dishonorable.
Journalist arrests “were not warranted,” according to an evaluation of police tactics during a Just Stop Oil demonstration on the M25.
Hertfordshire Police detained four press personnel while they were covering the demonstrations on November 7 and 8.
Charlotte Lynch, a media reporter , claimed that after being detained by the police for five hours while covering the protest, she was shackled.
Charlie Hall, the chief constable, claimed he had apologized to the journalists.
Ms. Lynch claimed that despite presenting officers her press card, she was detained on suspicion of planning to cause a public nuisance on November 8th.
Between junction 20 (Abbots Langley) and junction 21 (M1/St Albans interchange), she had been providing updates from a bridge.
The journalist described the experience as “extremely horrifying” and claimed that she “broke into tears” while being held in a cell.
Mr. Hall expressed his “true regret” for his officers’ behavior in a letter to Ms. Lynch, adding that the police “obviously got things wrong.”
Additionally, a photographer and a videographer who were detained while attempting to capture the protests claimed they were kept in police detention for almost 13 hours.
Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and senior police personnel stressed the significance of press freedom in response to the arrests.
Ch Supt Jon Hutchinson from the Cambridgeshire Police conducted the investigation after Mr. Hall requested it be done by a separate agency.
“Whilst the review has correctly concluded that the arrests of the journalists were not justified, and that changes in training and command need to be made, it found no evidence to indicate that officers acted maliciously or were deliberately disproportionate,” Mr. Hall said.
“They made mistakes and I now reiterate my apologies.
“The review also affords some valuable learning, which we are acting on immediately, so that it can be used when policing future protests, and we will also be sharing the learning nationally.”
Hertfordshire Police undertook a number of improvements in response to review suggestions, including awareness training, availability to mentors and advisers during operations, and evaluating the level of expertise of the force’s Public Order Public Safety commanders.
In his letter to Ms. Lynch, Mr. Hall said: “I hope the actions we have taken indicate how seriously we have taken this matter and our clear intent to prevent this from happening again in the future.”
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