Second man, 24, charged with assault after Chris Whitty accosted in London park

Jonathan Chew has been charged with common assault and obstructing police

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A second man has been charged after Prof Chris Whitty was accosted while walking through a London park.

Jonathan Chew, 24, will appear at Westminster Magistrates’ Court today charged with common assault and obstructing police.

It happened at around 7.20pm on Sunday, June 27 in St James' Park.

Police have previously charged Lewis Hughes, 23, with common assault in connection with the incident.

Hughes, from Romford, was charged by postal requisition and will appear at Westminster Magistrates’ Court on Friday, 30 July.

In a statement this morning, the Met Police said: "At approximately 19:20hrs on Sunday, 27 June officers in St James’s Park became aware of a man being accosted by a group of men.

The incident happened in St James' Park, London, on June 27
(Image: PA)

"They spoke to the victim and checked his welfare. He had not suffered any injuries.

"Officers subsequently reviewed video footage which emerged after the incident and the matter was referred to the Public Order Crime Team. Enquiries continue."

Prof Whitty was shown in footage published on social media last week being grabbed by two grinning men.

It prompted wide condemnation, including from Prime Minister Boris Johnson, and calls for the police to take action.

After the incident, Mr Johnson tweeted: "I'm shocked at seeing the despicable harassment of Chief Medical Officer Chris Whitty."

He continued: "Our hard-working public servants should not have to face this kind of intimidation on our streets and we will not tolerate it."

Mr Johnson's spokesman told journalists: “It’s completely unacceptable for a hard working public servant like the Chief Medical Officer and people who are working to save lives in the pandemic to face intimidation, harassment and abuse.

"This is a matter for the police and you’ll have seen they are investigating.

“We keep security under constant review but I’m not going to be commenting on specific arrangements for individuals.”

As calls mounted for him to be given police protection, Home Secretary Priti Patel said: "The police are actually involved as well and we're also speaking to Chris to look at what we can do to support him."

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