14th April 2016

Today, the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) announced it has concluded its investigation into the circumstances surrounding the death of Duncan Tomlin, and has referred the case to the CPS to decide whether criminal charges should be brought against any individual. The IPCC has stated that the evidence relates to the actions of five police officers.

Paul Tomlin, Duncan’s father, said:

My family and I welcome the decision by the IPCC to refer the case to the CPS.  We trust that the CPS will make a decision as soon as reasonably possible, ensuring it has the resources to do so.

We consider that it is vital for ensuring continuing public trust in the police that these officers are not allowed to remain on any form of active duty whilst the CPS consider if charges should be brought.  We call on the Chief Constable of Sussex Police to now suspend all five officers concerned.

We are aware that there are number of cases where officers have been allowed to continue to serve despite a referral by the IPCC to the CPS to consider criminal charges. We believe this sends the wrong message about how seriously the police take these matters, and we hope in Duncan’s case that the Chief Constable will recognise the need to ensure the public’s confidence by suspending the officers.”

Helen Stone, solicitor for Paul and the Tomlin family said:

Duncan’s family were understandably dismayed in 2014 when they learnt that the officers involved were all still on active duty, despite the IPCC investigation into potential criminal conduct and gross misconduct. 

Now that the officers may face criminal charges, we call once again on the Chief Constable of Sussex Police for their immediate suspension.”

Deborah Coles, director of INQUEST said:

“We welcome the decision of the IPCC to refer this matter to the CPS for consideration of criminal charges. Concerns about the process for holding the police to account following a death in custody has been at the forefront of public debate for some time.  There now needs  to be a prompt and robust scrutiny of the actions of the Sussex police officers. Until a decision is made we call on the Chief Constable of Sussex Police to  suspend the officers”

INQUEST has been working with Paul and Tomlin family since July 2014. They  are represented by  INQUEST Lawyers Group members Helen Stone from Hickman and Rose and Jude Bunting from Doughty Street Chambers.

For more information please contact Helen Stone: 0207 702 5340 ; [email protected]