Three police officers have reportedly been suspended after arresting a man wrongly accused of being a pedophile. The man was later beaten unconscious, set on fire and killed by neighbors in Bristol, England.
The Independent reports that the three suspended officers are under investigation by a police commission, while three others possibly face misconduct charges stemming from the July arrest of Bijan Ebrahimi, the man who was detained after incorrectly being branded a pedophile by neighbors.
According to the Daily Mail, Ebrahimi was arrested in July after police were told by his neighbors that he had been taking photographs of children from his window. But after an investigation, police concluded that Ebrahimi, who is physically disabled and unable to work, was actually taking pictures of children who he thought were vandalizing his garden.
Despite being cleared by police, two days later Ebrahimi was targeted by two men in his neighborhood. According to the Daily Mail, two 24-year-old suspects beat Ebrahimi unconscious, set him on fire and killed him.
The Sunday Times reported the incident was caught on surveillance camera.
The Independent reports that the suspects, Lee James and Stephen Norley, admitted carrying out the attack. Both will be sentenced in December.
The family of Ebrahimi, who is Iranian, released a statement, criticizing the police for failing to adequately protect him.
"It should not be forgotten that Bijan had been the victim of hate crimes for a number of years before his death, both due to his race and his physical disability," the family said, according to the Independent. "It was for this reason that the police should have taken especially seriously his calls for help in the days before he was murdered. We hope that not only James and Norley will face justice but also all of those who failed to protect Bijan, including the police."