Drunken woman daubed 'All Lives Matter' across Bomber Command memorial

Drunken woman, 31, daubed ‘All Lives Matter’ with blue paint across London’s Bomber Command memorial in ‘premeditated and political attack’ court hears

  • Charlie Barnes was captured on CCTV with a tin of paint and a bottle of brandy
  • Vandalism on memorial wall in Green Park was scrubbed off at a cost of £500 
  • Barnes claims she can’t remember incident in London because drink was spiked
  • The 31-year-old admitted criminal damage and will be sentenced at a later date

A drunken woman painted the words ‘all lives matter’ across London’s Bomber Command Memorial, a court heard.

Charlie Barnes, 31, wandered over to The Royal Air Force Bomber Command Memorial in Green Park with a tin of blue paint in hand on 10 June this year.

The Bomber Command Memorial features seven statues of a Bomber Command aircrew – a tribute to the 55,573 Bomber Command crew who lost their lives in the Second World War.

Charlie Barnes, pictured leaving court, admitted criminal damage and will be sentenced later

Veterans and families of the deceased visit the memorial to pay tributes to their loved ones, the court heard.

Barnes appeared at Westminster Magistrates’ court wearing a beady white necklace over a stripy brown dress and spoke to confirm her name and address.

The 31-year-old stared at her feet as she admitted criminal damage of the historic memorial.

Prosecuting, Arfan Ahmed said: ‘This matter took place on 10 June and it relates to criminal damage of the walls inside the Bomber Command Memorial.

‘The defendant took in a tin of paint and placed it on the floor.

‘She then picked up a paintbrush and painted the words in blue paint ‘all lives matter.

‘This is all captured on CCTV, she is also seen in possession of and swinging a bottle of what appears to be brandy.

‘If any family members of The Royal Air Force were to see that, they would have been caused serious alarm or distress, seeing those words painted, and the memorial defaced in that manner.’

Mr Ahmed said the memorial stone walls were scrubbed clean after the incident at a cost of £500.

He continued: ‘It’s premeditated, it’s a planned attack – you don’t walk down to the Bomber Command Memorial with a tin of paint.

‘It’s aggravated because it’s a public memorial and the content of the writing.’

Mr Ahmed told the court Barnes’ actions were not only premeditated, but political.

He said: ‘The nature of the event seems to be stemming from a political event.

‘The nature of these offences seem to be politically motivated.’

The Bomber Command Memorial in Green Park, London which was unveiled by Queen Elizabeth II in 2012 has been defaced a number of times, most recently in June this year

Laura Bayles, defending, said: ‘There was nothing said about political motivations, there is no evidence of that.’

Ms Bayles said Barnes did not know what she was doing because her drink had been spiked.

‘She had no awareness of this until she was shown the CCTV by police at interview,’ the solicitor said.

Magistrate Lubbock granted Barnes unconditional bail but warned: ‘You must keep your phone on and charged at all times so probation can get in touch with you.

‘If you do anything else or any other offending you could be arrested and dealt with more seriously.’

Barnes, of Osram Court, Shepherds Bush Road, Hammersmith, admitted criminal damage.

She will next appear at Westminster Magistrates’ Court to meet with probation on 17 September.

In June this year, more than 113,000 signed the petition which was initiated by Len Chappell from the Forces Online veterans’ website, demanding anyone who desecrates memorials honouring Britain’s war heroes should feel the full force of the law.

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