Published Date: 05.12.2011
The Police Ombudsman's Office was alerted to the death last Friday (2 December 2011) of an adult male who had been in police custody the previous afternoon.
Following protocol which requires the Office to enquire into all deaths occurring within 24 hours of police contact, investigators looked to establish the circumstances of the incident to assess if there was any evidence the police had somehow contributed to the man's death.
It was established that the man had been in custody for a short period in Musgrave Street, Belfast for driving related offences. The investigators spoke to the police officers who had dealt with him, as well as the Forensic Medical Officer and the medical staff at the Royal Victoria Hospital who had assessed him following his release from custody.
Following these enquiries, and a Post Mortem which revealed that the cause of death was a heart attack, the Police Ombudsman decided that there would be no further investigation into the incident.