Highgate minister and volunteer policeman mugged after riot duty

A Highgate church minister and volunteer policeman was robbed on his way home from a 15-hour shift during the London riots.

Special Constable Andrew Hill, who had helped contain the disorder in Camden, was dragged along the ground as Biniam Tekle wrestled a briefcase from him and took a bag with his uniform in it last Tuesday morning.

Tekle, 21, tried to flee into the night but nearby police managed to arrest him.

Mr Hill, a 51-year-old minister at the Free Church in Highgate, was planning to wear his uniform at his daughter’s wedding last weekend.

“As I saw the bag disappearing in to the distance my heart sank. But it was only out of my hands for 30 seconds before my colleagues came to my aid - their response was incredibly speedy and I am indebted to them,” he said.

Tekle, from Holloway Road, had been watching footage of the riots on television before he robbed Mr Hill in Pentonville Road. He was sentenced to two years in jail at Wood Green Crown Court on Monday.

Special constables were asked to work through the night when riots swept through the capital last week.

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Metropolitan Police’s Acting Commissioner Tim Godwin said: “I am grateful to all those Specials who have responded to the extraordinary circumstances of recent days, giving their time to keep London safe. Their contribution has been invaluable.”