LONDON (AFP) – British police ordered a review of an “incident” on Monday in which a man ran into Prime Minister David Cameron after he had given a speech, in an apparent breach of security.
Cameron was seen in video images backing away from a man with long dreadlocks running towards him and then being rushed to his car as the man was hustled away by security officers.
The police said in a statement that the 28-year-old man was arrested by officers but later released without charge following the incident in Leeds in northern England.
The unit responsible for the prime minister’s protection “will now conduct a review of the incident”, it said.
Cameron played down the security scare by thanking his bodyguards and making a joking reference to former deputy prime minister John Prescott, who punched a protester in 2001.
“John Prescott was in the room as I gave the speech so as I left the room, I thought the moment of maximum danger had probably passed. But clearly that wasn’t the case,” he said.
Police said in a tweet there was “nothing sinister” and it was “just a man in the wrong place at the wrong time”.
The man, who was wearing headphones, a tracksuit and sports shoes, later told BBC radio he had been jogging to a nearby gym when he ran into “a bunch of men in suits”.
“I didn’t know it was David Cameron until they let me out of the police van an hour later and told me what I’d actually done,” Dean Farley said.
“It begs the question, how good is Cameron’s security if I managed to run between it before they stopped me?”
Conservative lawmaker Mark Pritchard said that the incident was “a clear breach of security and could have been far more sinister in outcome”.