Suffolk/Norfolk: Review after officer tracked down suicidal, missing man found to be armed

Review after officer tracked down suicidal, missing man found to be armed

Review after officer tracked down suicidal, missing man found to be armed - Credit: Archant

A REPORT into an incident where a police officer tracked down a suicidal, missing man has prompted a review of procedures in Suffolk after he was found to be armed.

Businessman Stewart Page, 60, turned a .22 rifle on himself in a hotel car park on the afternoon of Sunday, November 11.

Police and paramedics fought to save Mr Page, from Caistor, near Grimsby, but he died at the scene from a head injury.

The shooting happened at Briarfields Hotel at Titchwell, near Hunstanton, Norfolk.

A date has not yet been set for an inquest into Mr Page’s death. But police have carried out an internal investigation into the circumstances surrounding the death.

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The case was one of a number discussed at a joint “lessons learned meeting” between the Norfolk and Suffolk forces.

A report by Suffolk Police’s professional standards board says: “A missing person was located by an officer. The officer was unaware that the missing person was in possession of two firearms and the individual later shot himself in front of the officer.”

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Under lessons learned, the report says there had been “a failure to make checks of force systems at the earliest opportunity”.

This meant an unnamed officer who spoke to Mr Page, after an incident believed to have taken place at another hotel earlier in the day, was not aware that he was armed.

In its recommendations, the report said a “review of systems and procedures in relation to high risk/suicidal missing persons” was required.

Mr Page’s death was originally referred to the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) because he had had “previous police contact”. But the IPCC passed it back to Norfolk Police for “local investigation”.

Meanwhile, it was revealed a motorist was held in custody for two hours after wrongly being accused of driving while disqualified – because his Police National Computer (PNC) marker had not been removed.

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