Thanks for replying.
Last Thursday I was coming back from Hither Green to London Bridge.
There is no barriers at Hither Green and I touched in my oyster card, apparently did not register so, when I tried to touch out in London Bridge the barrier did not and showed a (-30) pence shortage.
The train staff (a woman I have her details) grabbed the oyster card from my hands and read it through a device and started very rudely accusing me of haven’t touching in when in Hither Green, she started going away with me oyster card saying I will should have a penalty.
I explained I had touched in and did not realised did not work because I could just go in the station without passing through barriers. She kept accusing me very rudely and I asked for my oyster card back. She kept saying it wasn’t my and start shouting at me.
Another staff came along (a man and I also have his details) took the card from her and also started accusing me of not touching in and it was not true. I started getting overwhelmed by the accusations and I asked for my oyster card back and he also started accusing me and saying it wasn’t my property. I paid £5 for the oyster card and use it for a few years the same card. He never said the TFL owns the cards and just kept saying it wasn’t mine. I then grabbed by force the card from his hand and he started handling me and pressing my harm trying to restrain me. I kept shouting “DO NOT TOUCH ME, ARE YOU CRAZY, YOU CANNOT TOUCH ME” and he continues to hold me by my arms standing in front of me trying to block my way saying “I am calling the police do you want to decide this with the police?”
And I said yes, because I believe will listening to my version and also protect me and not against me. I was thinking by then still thinking the oyster card was my property and this man could never man handle me.
The police men who came were three which immediately took me by a corner, away from the public as possible and the first thing I heard from the 1st police man was “I am 28 years in the police force I know this kind of issues…I know what you are on about (for me he is already accusing me) and then asked me what had happened with a very sarcastic smile. At the point I knew they were against me and said I will not make any comment.
The 1st police man smiled and said I will be took to the police station then and said “You will spend a nice night at the police station young lady” For me already intimidating me. I then walked closed to the entrance where my friend was waiting on me outside.
The followed me and the 3 police men started then scaring me about going to the police station when this 1st police man looked at me with the sarcasm in his face and said “There is a nice accent you have there where are you from?” I did not reply and they keeping me cornered the police man asked for me ID. I walk around me brazilian ID and he took from my hands and laughing he said “aaa Brazilian ID” and left with it with a smile in his face. He came back on the phone with someone else and said how do you live here I said I was European he was not satisfied and kept saying “But you were born in Rio de Janeiro?” Smiling always I said I do have a German passport and he kept asking when did I live there, how long I was here etc…obviously trying to incriminate me.
By that stage I was really scared and wasn’t really thinking clearly anymore.
He asked for my address, but I have only moved about 3 weeks ago and all my details apart from my bank still in the previous address and I gave him the old address as is also the address where my oyster card is registered.
He came back very satisfied explaining they could not proved I lived in that address and we had only to routes in this situation or I prove my address or I will be kept and brought to the police station until I prove my address. At that stage I asked them why were they doing this with me…they say they don’t believe in anybody’s word and I could be a ticket paying evader and they will need to prove I am not, because is a criminal offence and if I could not prove my address they will take me to the station and I would have to be in court the next morning…
By then I was in tears and I kept saying they could only print the history of my card and see I pay for all my travelling and by weekly/monthly travel cards and has never had any problem with the TFL or the Police in this country.
They then asked for my landlady’s telephone number who was at work tutoring and could not answered the phone at first so, this 1st police man again came to me smiling “IT SEEMS WE ARE GOING TO THE ROUTE TO THE STATION NO YOUNG LADY IS THERE IS NOTHING OR ANYTHING WE CAN DO TO AVOID IT” and kept smiling at me. At that stage I was in tears sitting on the floor…very ashamed and nervous thinking they will keep me for the night as he kept repeating and laughing.
He finally reached my landlady and he spoke to her far from me and I could not listening to the conversation, but my landlady told me later he started the conversation with her saying “THIS YOUNG LADY IS TRYING TO AVOID PAYING HER FARES AND TO AVOID IMPRISONMENT I NEED TO CONFIRM HER ADDRESS”, but apparently her word was also not enough and he kept scaring me.
He came back saying for me to look properly in my bags and I kept saying I did not carry any letters or anything else on me…the 1st police man very badly started threatening me and kept making me look in my bags and asking can I help you it will be better if I help you. I was in absolutely tears and very slowly he started taking all my stuff and going through it…obviously trying to find something to incriminate me and not help me at all.
I had the idea of calling my bank and by the phone need to authorise this bank attendant to confirm my address over the phone. After confirmed the 1st Police man looked at me and said always smiling sarcastically “SEE HOW EASY THAT IS YOUNG LADY”.
Then this 1st Police man disappeared and a 2nd one came along saying me rights and explaining I had a criminal caution which is not a record and a penalty to pay asked me to sign this statement which I wanted to refused to signed but he give me not the option of it and I have written on it that I did not agree with the allegations before signing it.
The 1st train staff the woman came along then with another fine from the Southeaster trains which I was also obliged to signed and pay the minimum of £5. When I asked for her details she said her name was written on it, but I barely could read it and when I asked her to spell it to me she gave her back to me and left it.
I then demand to the 2nd police man to give me hers and the man staff details which I kept it.
The 2nd police man then asked me to signed his pad book and when I refused to signed again also because was a lot written in there and he did not let me read it he said “OK NOW YOU ARE MAKE FUN OF IT, I CAN WRITE YOU REFUSED TO SIGN IT” and there I was very scared they would start all the bulling again and I barely control my tears. At the stage he asked another member of staff to open the gates to me and I left.
I could not see the 1st police man or the train staff anywhere, because once I was released I wanted to take their details for the complaints and appeals.
I then left after 1.30hours or more exhausted.
I am just recovering from a long time on anxiety pills, because of panic attacks which I am now off the medication…this episode brought me to the very beginning of my illness and treatment. I am now invalidated to work or go out my house, as I am scared and having panic attacks believing I will be bullied again by the police or anyone else.
I live in this country for 14 years which I said to the police many times, as well as asking them to verify my oyster card history to check I am not suspect in any way of paying evader, but did not matter. I believe I was treated with racism and also with no respect or my human/citizen rights were taking in consideration.
I thought the police was here to be on my side or at least give me a chance to explain myself and not to accuse me just because I do have a funny accent.
Please Jo help me…I feel very humiliated and my life is being seriously affected and I even might loose my job, because I simply cannot leave my home.
Thanks so much!
Please call me on XXXXXXXXXXX if you need it