The Daily Mail has obtained police bodycam footage showing a visibly distraught father getting violently dragged away from his six-year-old daughter's hospital bedside in the North of England by authorities moments after he had been told that she was being taken off of life support.
Dr. Rashid Abbasi didn’t want to let go of his daughter Zainab's hand. Abbasi, a hospital consultant who worked for the United Kingdom’s National Health Service for over 30 years, had been informed that his little girl was having her life support withdrawn 30 minutes before the police arrived on August 19.
Zainab suffered from a rare condition called Niemann-Pick disease and while her doctors felt like it was her time to go, Abbasi wasn’t ready to say goodbye and was willing to do everything he could to extend her life for as long as possible.
"I would not leave my daughter’s bedside voluntarily just to talk to them I knew if I stepped out they would not let me back in and they might use that opportunity to, if I am away from her, to remove her tube," Abbasi told BBC Radio 4's Today, per UK Independent.
Northumbria officers initially tried speaking with Abbasi for a few minutes before resorting to more aggressive measures. His wife was taken out of the room first by her wrists. As Abbasi tried to resist their efforts to handcuff him, he started complaining of chest pain, and asked for the medication in his pocket.
Abbasi was eventually restrained by his ankles, moved to a trolley bed and transported out of the room. Zainab died one month later. Abbasi is suing the Northumbria Police for wrongful arrest and might take legal action against the NHS Trust for their handling of his daughter's condition.
"I reacted as any father would who is suffering from grief, but I also knew in my professional capacity that my daughter was purposefully not receiving the treatment she needed to live," Abbasi said. "For challenging this and trying to protect my daughter's life, I was treated like a criminal and an animal. This was brutal and unacceptable, but we want to emphasise that it was the doctors and the hospital who escalated the situation and involved the police unnecessarily."
"We are still grieving deeply, but we have no choice but to expose what has happened and to fight for justice for our daughter," he added.