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Woman convicted of rioting outside neighbourhood police station

Custody image of Charly Pitman
Charly Pitman

A 24-year-woman has today become the eighteenth person to be held responsible for offences committed during last year’s riot in Bristol.

Charly Pitman, of Brislington, Bristol, is the third person to be found guilty of riot by a jury following a trial at Bristol Crown Court.

Jurors took just over an hour to convict her of the offence following a trial lasting three days.

Ten other people have previously admitted riot while five others have either been convicted of or admitted other offences committed during the incident outside Bridewell Police Station on 21 March last year.

Pitman has been released on bail and is due back at Bristol Crown Court on 7 July when she’ll be sentenced.

To date, the fifteen people jailed in connection with the riot have been imprisoned for a total of 57 years and 11 months.

A 30-year-old man who pleaded guilty to charges of riot and arson on the first day of his trial earlier this month is due to be sentenced on 23 May while a 43-year-old woman has also been given a hospital order.

During Pitman’s trial prosecutors told jurors how she positioned herself at the front of the crowd challenging police officers as they attempted to separate them from the neighbourhood police station.

They were shown footage of her acting aggressively towards the officers, striking their shields and helmets, and were told her actions caused them and others to fear for their safety.

Detective Superintendent James Riccio said: “Charly Pitman may not have used the highest levels of violence but she took up a prominent role at the front of the crowd and her actions undoubtedly escalated tensions and encouraged others to attack police officers.

“The fact the jury took little more than an hour to convict her highlights how clear her offending was. She denied acting together with others with a common purpose but the jury evidently had no doubt she was guilty of riot.”

We’d like to remind all concerned that criminal proceedings relating to the events of Sunday 21 March are ongoing against other defendants and that they have a right to a fair trial.

It is extremely important there should be no reporting, commentary or sharing of information online which could in any way prejudice these proceedings.