‘Not a good precedent!’ GMB guest Calvin Robinson in furious rant over Colston 4 acquittal

Edward Colston statue: Protesters cleared of criminal damage

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The four demonstrators were cleared of accusations of criminal damage after participating in a Black Lives Matter protest in Bristol last year. Good Morning Britain guest Calvin Robinson slammed the verdict as he warned the precedent could help others justify their “vigilante mindset” in the future. He told Susanna Reid: “I don’t think it sets a very good precedent.

“It’s almost vigilante mindset, isn’t it, that you can just tear down a statue if you don’t agree with it.

“What they should have done, you are right to say they tried over the years to put protest in place and petitions.

“What they should’ve done is ask for a referendum.”

Commenting after acquitter Rhian Graham defended the decision, Mr Robinson continued: “It’s quite easy for Rhian and other people to say, ‘actually, this is our statue, we are people of Bristol so we have a right to tear it down.’ 

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“But how does she know she speaks for the majority? That’s the question I’d like to ask?

“Because the majority of people have a say, if they own that statue. And like any statue in a public square, we should have a public referendum.

“People should have a vote and say, ‘do you want to keep it?'”

He added: “As a context to it, ‘do you want to leave it alone, or do you want to remove it?’ 

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“And if you want to remove the statue, we should do that properly, in a civilised manner, not tearing it down, not vandalism.”

Rhian Graham, 30, Milo Ponsford, 26, and Sage Willoughby, 22, Jake Skuse, 33, were acquitted of criminal damage on Wednesday following an 11-day trial at Bristol Crown Court.

The bronze Edward Colston statue was removed from its plinth in June 2020, before being rolled into the water in the wake of the murder of George Floyd by a police officer in the US.

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