Officers cleared in custody care probe

TWO Suffolk police officers have been cleared of allegations they failed to take proper care of a man in their custody.

TWO Suffolk police officers have been cleared of allegations they failed to take proper care of a man in their custody.

Sgt Nigel Mead, 50, and Sgt Mark Turner, 44, were found not guilty yesterday of criminal charges connected to the incident after prosecutors made a last minute decision to offer no evidence on the first day of their trial.

The men, who both live in the Bury St Edmunds area, had previously indicated not guilty pleas to the allegation that they wilfully neglected their duty as custody sergeants to ensure the welfare of a person in their charge.

Prosecutor Guy Ayres said: “Over the weekend, further evidence came to the Crown's attention - an expert report from the defence. The Crown reviewed the case and after careful consideration took the decision that it was not appropriate to seek a guilty verdict from a jury. We will offer no evidence against both the two defendants.

“Their behaviour was not criminal but they understand disciplinary procedures will continue in the normal way.”

The charge related to an alleged incident in the Bury St Edmunds area in November which has since been reported to the Independent Police Complaints Commission.

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A 36-year-old man, who has not been named, was arrested on suspicion of theft and taken to a police station in the Bury area but was later sent to hospital for medical treatment.

A spokesman for Suffolk police said: “Suffolk Constabulary co-operated fully with the independent investigation into this incident by the IPCC.

“We will now liaise with the IPCC to see if any further internal disciplinary action needs to be taken in this case. Suffolk Constabulary has already accepted the findings within the IPCC report into this incident and has taken action against three officers, who have all been given advice about their conduct. We cannot comment further, at this stage.”

Both officers declined to comment after the case.

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