A Bradford father-of-two who was unlawfully arrested and assaulted by police officers after trying to help their colleagues has won £15,000 in compensation from the West Yorkshire force.

Anwar Gillespie, 39, was dragged from a neighbour’s house, pulled to the ground and kicked and punched by officers, as he tried to act as a peacemaker.

After two years of legal wrangling, West Yorkshire Police has now agreed to pay Mr Gillespie £15,000 in damages over the incident in October, 2007.

Mr Gillespie, who has two children aged 12 and 11, had been moving house, in Rufus Street, Great Horton, when a woman neighbour was arrested for non-payment of fines. Her 16-year-old son was seen crying and went inside the house.

Mr Gillespie was given permission by a police officer to go into the house to calm down the teenager. But once inside, he was grabbed by an officer and dragged out of the house.

Mr Gillespie was pulled to the floor, struck above the eye by an officer’s knee, and hit on the back of the head while face down.

He was kicked and punched a number of times, his arms handcuffed behind his back, and one officer put his hand over his face and pushed his fingers into Mr Gillespie’s eyes.

He was held at Trafalgar House police station, where he was detained for 24 hours. He suffered cuts, bruises, grazes and swelling.

Mr Gillespie said yesterday: “A few police officers take advantage of the power they have. It shouldn’t happen.

“I hope they do learn lessons from this. More training is needed for officers. I hope some disciplinary action is taken against the officers concerned in my case.

The force’s solicitor has apologised in writing, on behalf of the Chief Constable Sir Norman Bettison, to Mr Gillespie’s lawyers.

The letter states: “West Yorkshire Police unlawfully arrested your client, assaulting him in the process, and thereafter conveyed him to Bradford South police station, where he was detained (for) a period of 24 hours.

“On behalf of the Chief Constable, I apologise unreservedly for the unlawful actions and for any pain, suffering, humiliation and upset that this caused your client. I would advise that lessons have been learned in order to stop a similar situation from happening again.”

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