Woman who attacked police officers during Kill the Bill riot jailed
A woman has been jailed after being caught on camera attacking police officers and smashing the window of Bridewell police station in Bristol.
Mariella Gedge-Rogers, of Clifton, Bristol, was found guilty of rioting by a jury at Bristol Crown Court in February this year.
The unanimous verdict convicted Gedge-Rogers of being part of a group tha used or threatened violence and, together, caused others to fear for their personal safety.
The 27-year-old was jailed for five and a half years at a hearing on Thursday (March 10). She will be expected to serve half her sentence in custody and the other half on licence.
Gedge-Rogers was arrested six days after the riot took place outside the city centre police station on Sunday March 21, 2021.
During her trial, footage from officers’ body-worn cameras, CCTV and mobile phone footage was played to the court.
In the videos, Gedge-Rogers is seen to hit an officer on the head with a skateboard and throw improvised missiles at other officers from the roof of the police station.
She was also seen repeatedly striking the front window of the station with her skateboard before passing it to a man for him to do the same.
As the hearing began, Gedge-Rogers could be heard crying from the dock. She spoke only to confirm her name.
His Honour Judge Patrick said: “You used your skateboard as a weapon and threw missiles and objects. You also had had a considerable amount of drink.
“Nevertheless, I conclude that your culpability is lessened because of your PTSD. And I bear in mind that it will make the sentence more difficult for you to serve.
“In addition, you have expressed remorse at what you have done and I’m told you’re ashamed. People who knew you identify that you have behaved out of character.”
Speaking of the impact of the rioting on police officers, Judge Patrick said: “The context of your offending was the Kill the Bill protests in March last year, which started peacefully. From 5pm, that changed. Vile abuse was directed at the police. Objects and missiles were thrown at them, some from above police vans.
“At least one firework was discharged, officers were pulled from their lines. They were physically attacked, some with missiles, some with weapons, and others were struck, spat on, kicked and punched.”
He added: “Experienced police officers, some with military experience, describe it movingly. One with significant services experience described it as one of the most frightening experiences in his career.
“Another said it was ferocious, prolonged and determined violence which caused them to be more scared than ever before. ‘When I got home, I cried. All my life I wanted to be a police officer but after this it made me second-guess everything. It was utterly terrifying, like a war zone’, said another.”
Gedge-Rogers is now the 15th person to be sentenced in connection with the riot.
To date, those sentenced have been jailed for a combined total of more than 50 years.
Jasmine York, 26, of Brislington, Bristol, is due to be sentenced on Monday March 14 after being convicted of arson.