Kate Garraway slammed over daft questions to to bereaved mother

Ricky Reel: Kate Garraway asks mother about police comments

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Sukhdev Reel appeared on Thursday’s Good Morning Britain to discuss her book, Silence is Not an Option, based on the unsolved investigation into the death of her son, Ricky, who died 25 years ago. At one point, she recalled to Kate Garraway and Adil Ray how a police officer at the time had told her Ricky probably “ran away” to avoid an arranged marriage. Kate responded by asking if the officer could have been “joking,” which sparked a backlash from ITV viewers, leading some to fume she was “playing down racism”.

The bereaved mother is still searching for answers after Ricky vanished in October 1997 following a night out with friends.

He was found dead in the River Thames following a racially-motivated attack in Kingston-upon-Thames.

Ricky’s three friends reemerged after the group were targetted, so the police deemed his death as unrelated to the assault.

The 20-year-old had never reappeared and his body was found the following week. 25 years on, police have now released a fresh appeal for information about Ricky’s death.

Relaying the events to Adil and Kate, Sukhdev commented: “The strange thing is it was the police officer who told me that Ricky and his friends were racially attacked.

“And then turned around and said, ‘I’m not making a statement, you have to wait for 24 hours.’

“Now, even an idiot would know if the four people go together and they are racially attacked, then three people come back, the one that’s missing is in danger.

“But they didn’t want to know. So we went to Kingston Police and we repeated the same thing.

“Instead of saying, ‘We’ll make a statement,’ the police officer turned around and said, ‘Well, you Asian people, you always arrange your children’s marriages, maybe you are doing that and he decided to run away.'”

“Sorry just repeat that again – he said what about arranged marriages?” a stunned Adil asked.

Sukhdev repeated: “He said, ‘You Asians, you always arrange your children’s marriages so maybe you were trying to arrange a marriage for Ricky so he ran away.'”

“That’s based on nothing at all, is it?” Adil emphasised, shocked by the revelation.

“Nothing!” Sukhdev responded. “They didn’t know Ricky.”

Kate probed: “But did you get a feeling – I mean, it’s shocking – but did you get a feeling he was saying that as a joke in order to be part of an investigation to see if he could expose something?

“I mean why would someone say that at a moment of great fear for you?”

“Yeah, he was abusing me,” the grief-stricken mother answered. “He was abusing my race.”

Viewers soon took to social media to blast Kate’s line of questioning, with Twitter user @_sophieee97 writing: “Why does Kate ask stupid questions…  #GMB.” (sic)

@jennii_cookiiee responded to the question, sharing: “I thought I was the only one!!!”

@uniquedollsUK fumed: “Kate Garraway asking daft questions ffs #GMB.”

@notrowenaa added: “Kate, read the f***ing room! How is Ricky’s mum supposed to know why they’re casting prejudiced? #GMB.”

“And this is the problem! @[email protected] playing down racism as a joke! #gmb #JusticeForRicky,” penned @NijiPR.

@Verona79708347 remarked: “I think Garraway is the joke!” while @MollerMisha stated: “@GMB Ricky’s mum “Kingston Police said to her you Asian people arrange marriages maybe he runway from this” #racistmetpolice @kategarraway reply ‘maybe police were joking about this’ WTF #KATEGARRAWAY We expected better from you.  #GMB,” (sic).

Good Morning Britain airs weekdays from 6am on ITV.

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