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Statement following death of man in police custody, Torquay

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Update - 9 June 2020

Devon & Cornwall Police issued a statement on May 21, 2020, following the death in custody of Simeon Francis at Torquay, late on May 20, 2020. The matter was reported widely by local and national media at the time.

The Independent Office for Police Conduct has already confirmed that a preliminary post-mortem examination has been held, which did not identify a cause of death for Mr Francis. Further tests will be carried out

Throughout the last three weeks, the force has been co-operating fully with an independent enquiry from the Independent Office for Police Conduct, following an immediate mandatory referral by the force.

At this time, no members of Devon & Cornwall Police staff have been suspended or restricted.

Assistant Chief Constable Jim Colwell said: “An independent investigation by the IOPC will always be carried out following a death in police custody.

“The force made this referral immediately and has co-operated fully with the IOPC ever since, this will continue in the coming weeks and months.

“Our thoughts and condolences remain with the family and friends of Mr Francis and we remain committed to a wholly appropriate, independent and thorough investigation into the events surrounding Mr Francis’ death.

“As this matter remains subject to an IOPC independent investigation it would be inappropriate to comment further at this time, but our communities can be rest assured that Devon & Cornwall Police will always operate with integrity, honesty and transparency.”


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