published: 21 September 2017
Today a report examining how a different approach to policing people with mental health needs could have prevented James Herbert’s death in custody has been published by the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC).
With input from both the family and INQUEST, Six Missed Chances pinpoints six key opportunities for learning and change:
- A missed chance to avert a crisis, during the day of the arrest where police were made aware of James’ emerging mental health crisis and responded multiple times to incidents involving his increasingly concerning and disorientated behaviour
- A missed chance to de-escalate, at the roadside where the arrest and restraint took place
- A missed chance to release the pressure, once the restraint began
- A missed chance to get immediate mental health support, when the decision was made to take James to a police station rather than a medical facility
- A missed chance to check on James’ wellbeing, during the 30 mile journey from Wells to Yeovil where James was handcuffed and in leg restraints
- A missed medical emergency, on arrival at the police station where James arrived unresponsive and was carried by six officers into a cell
Examining each of these points, the report looks at what happened, what should happen and what might prevent best practice being followed, in order to consider what can be learnt in terms of national policing and recommendations.
James Herbert death: ‘Avoid police restraint’ for mentally ill people
21 September 2017