Death of Dalian Atkinson referred to CPS following investigation

Two police officers could face criminal charges over the death of Dalian Atkinson in 2016.

The former Aston Villa footballer died after a taser was used on him by police following an incident in Telford.

The Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) has referred a file of evidence relating to the death to the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) to consider potential criminal charges against two police officers.

The CPS referral marks the end of the IOPC investigation during which three West Mercia Police officers were interviewed twice under criminal caution and served with gross misconduct notices. The actions of the third officer have not been referred.

The police constables had attended the incident in Meadow Close, Trench and were involved in detaining Mr Atkinson outside the address prior to him being taken to hospital by ambulance.

Mr Atkinson died at the Princess Royal Hospital in Telford on Monday 15 August 2016.

The investigation gathered evidence which indicates that police contact with Mr Atkinson involved the use of a Taser, followed by a period of restraint and other uses of force.

IOPC regional director Derrick Campbell said: “On the basis of the evidence gathered I have decided to refer the matter to the Crown Prosecution Service to consider any potential criminal charges over the interaction two police officers had with Dalian Atkinson. This has been a lengthy and complex investigation and I am grateful for the patience shown by all concerned. We have kept West Mercia Police, Dalian’s family, and HM Coroner informed during the course of the investigation.”

At the request of the CPS, an expert report from a further pathologist is awaited to assist them with their consideration.

The IOPC investigation report has also been sent to West Mercia Police to determine whether or not disciplinary proceedings should follow and shared with HM Coroner to assist a future inquest.

A referral to the CPS is made when the IOPC investigation indicates that a criminal offence may have been committed. It does not mean that criminal charges will necessarily follow. The CPS will decide whether charges should be brought, based on the test set out in the Code for Crown Prosecutors.