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Man arrested after grabbing Queen Elizabeth II's coffin at Westminster Hall

By John Patrick Magno Ranara Published Sep 18, 2022 10:43 am

Police apprehended a man who ran out of the line of those mourning Queen Elizabeth II's death and attempted to grab her coffin.

In a report by Deadline, the man caused a disturbance on Friday, Sept. 16 at Westminster Hall, where Queen Elizabeth II is lying in state. The man was reported to have grabbed the Royal Standard, the flag that represents the Sovereign and the United Kingdom, before he was seized by the authorities.

This consequently interrupted the live feed of the event and shocked the other people, who had been waiting for 12 hours in the oldest building on the Parliamentary estate to say goodbye to the late queen.

A witness of the unexpected incident told Sky News that the man pushed her seven-year-old niece to "run up to the coffin, lift up the standard and try to do I don't know what."

"She was grabbed out the way and the police had him within two seconds. Terrible, absolutely terrible, so disrespectful and unbelievable—and this poor little seven-year-old child, this is her lasting memory of the Queen," the witness added.

The Metropolitan Police force later confirmed in a statement that the man was detained for committing a public-order offense, "Around 22:00 on Friday 16 September, officers from the Met’s Parliamentary and Diplomatic Protection Command detained a man in Westminster Hall following a disturbance."

Meanwhile, a spokesperson for the UK Parliament later assured the public that the man has "now been removed from the hall and the queue restarted with minimal disruption." 

This is not the first incident where someone had been apprehended for committing a disturbance during Queen Elizabeth II's funeral. On Sept. 12, a man was arrested for hurling insults at Prince Andrew—the second son of the late queen—during her funeral procession.

"Andrew, you’re a sick old man!" the man shouted in a reference to the alleged sexual assault cases brought against Prince Andrew.

Britain's longest-reigning monarch will lie in state in Westminster Hall until Monday morning before being buried in a nearby Westminster Abbey for a state funeral.