Police failed to note medical condition of man who died in Forest Gate station

Police Cellsource: Newham Recorder
published: 22 January 2017

An epileptic man who died in police custody would have been released earlier if his medical condition has been recorded when he was previously arrested, an inquest heard.

Eastern District of London Coroner Court were told Valdas Jasiunas was rushed to hospital after he was found collapsed in his cell in Forest Gate police station but died hours later on September 2, 2010.

The homeless 36-year-old Lithuanian, who was not a fluent English speaker, was in custody after he was arrested for begging.

He had previously being detained for being drunk and disorderly but his medical condition was not placed on the police national computer so it failed to appear on his record after officers checked when he was arrested a second time.

Asked whether that information should have been on Valdas’ record, witness Sgt Robert Tilly, custody officer at the time, said: “Without doubt. It would have been a very important indicator for my decision [whether to keep him in custody].”

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