- » Media
- » Press releases
- » Criminal trial of police sergeant and two detention officers following the death of Thomas Orchard begins
Criminal trial of police sergeant and two detention officers following the death of Thomas Orchard begins
Criminal trial of police sergeant and two detention officers following the death of Thomas Orchard to start on Tuesday 31 January, 2017
10:30am, Bristol Crown Court, Court Room 1, Small St, Bristol BS1 1DA
Before The Hon. Mrs Justice Cheema-Grubb
The prosecution of Custody Sergeant Jan Kingshott and Detention Officers Simon Tansley and Michael Marsden, charged with manslaughter, begins tomorrow (31 January 2017).
On the morning of 3 October 2012, Mr Orchard was detained in Exeter City Centre by Devon and Cornwall police officers and transported to Heavitree Road police station where an Emergency Restraint Belt was used as a ‘spit hood’ and placed around his face. Shortly after midday Mr Orchard was taken by ambulance to hospital where he was subsequently pronounced dead on 10 October 2012. Mr Orchard had a history of serious mental illness.
INQUEST has been working with the family of Thomas Orchard since his death. The family is legally represented by Hickman and Rose Solicitors.
Notes to editors:
Please note the family of Thomas Orchard and INQUEST will not be making any further statements until conclusion of the trial.
For further information, please contact Gill Goodby at INQUEST on 0207 263 1111.
INQUEST provides specialist advice on deaths in custody or detention or involving state failures in England and Wales. This includes a death in prison, in police custody or following police contact, in immigration detention or psychiatric care. INQUEST's policy and parliamentary work is informed by its casework and we work to ensure that the collective experiences of bereaved people underpin that work. Its overall aim is to secure an investigative process that treats bereaved families with dignity and respect; ensures accountability and disseminates the lessons learned from the investigation process in order to prevent further deaths.
Please refer to INQUEST the organisation in all capital letters in order to distinguish it from the legal hearing.
‘I was already working with INQUEST, which is the organisation who monitor deaths in custody, and at one AGM I told the audience that what happened to these people [killed in police custody like Chistopher Alder, Roger Sylvester and many others] could happen to any of us. And then a couple of years later, I was standing in front of them again but now it had happened to my cousin. So my family and me were now “users” of Inquest. It shows you that none of us are immune – here am I, Benjamin Zephaniah, patron of INQUEST and client of INQUEST at the same time.’
– Benjamin Zephaniah