14 February 2018

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) has announced today that criminal charges will not be brought against any of the Sussex police officers involved in the events surrounding Duncan Tomlin’s death. This is the second time that the CPS has decided not to bring charges against the officers. The original decision was reconsidered by the CPS following a Victim’s Right to Review by the family in January 2017.

Duncan died on 29 July 2014 in Haywards Heath. He became unresponsive after being restrained by police and placed into a police van.

The question of whether there will be disciplinary proceedings in respect of any of the officers are still being considered by the IOPC and Sussex Police.

Paul Tomlin, the father of Duncan, said: To say I am bitterly disappointed by the CPS’s decision is an understatement.  Although, I am not surprised by it given how few prosecutions are brought against police officers. We, as a family, are now focusing on the forthcoming inquest. I hope that these proceedings, and any disciplinary proceedings, will help to provide answers and accountability in relation to Duncan’s death.

Deborah Coles, director of INQUEST said: Yet again we see the failure to bring criminal charges over a preventable death after the use of force by police. The routine lack of criminal action following police deaths is the source of great anger and pain for families who expect and demand a system capable of delivering justice and accountability.”



For further information, please contact Lucy McKay or Sarah Uncles on 020 7263 1111 or [email protected]

INQUEST has been working with the family of Duncan Tomlin since August 2014. The family is represented by INQUEST Lawyers Group member Helen Stone of Hickman and Rose and Jude Bunting of Doughty Street Chambers.

You can read our two previous press releases about the IPCC decision to refer the case to the CPS here and about IPCC serving gross misconduct notices here.