source: The Guardian
published: 14 March 2017
Three Devon and Cornwall police staff have been cleared by a jury at Bristol crown court of the manslaughter of a man with mental health issues who collapsed while in custody after a heavy webbing belt was placed around his face.
Thomas Orchard suffered a cardiac arrest and brain damage after the belt was held across his face for more than five minutes.
The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) has been investigating Devon and Cornwall police and senior management for suspected corporate manslaughter.
The Health and Safety Executive has also been looking into whether the force breached health and safety legislation. The results of those investigations are due to be announced soon.
A number of officers also face disciplinary proceedings over Orchard’s death.