Investigation concludes following fatal police pursuit in Cheshire
Police officers who pursued a vehicle in Cheshire before it was involved in a fatal collision, acted in accordance with the relevant policies and procedures, an Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) investigation concluded.
An inquest which concluded yesterday (3 November) at Stockport Coroner’s Court, determined Kyle Hudson, 16, died as a result of a road traffic collision.
We received a referral from Cheshire Constabulary following the incident on Friday 13 November 2020 and our investigation looked at the actions and decision-making of officers involved in the pursuit.
Our investigation, which concluded in April 2021, found that a pursuit commenced when officers were carrying out an area search in Handforth, following a report of an attempted burglary.
Officers spotted a Toyota Yaris at 3.42am on Wilmslow Road, in the area near to the roundabouts above the A555. In-car footage from the police car showed the Yaris speeding up when the police car was behind it.
The emergency equipment of the police car was activated and, after a short pursuit, the Yaris crashed into a wall on Hall Moss Lane, Bramhall, Stockport. Officers carried out first aid as soon as Kyle, the driver, was taken out of the car in an attempt to save his life before paramedics arrived at the scene.
Kyle sadly died in hospital the following day. A passenger was taken to hospital with serious injuries at the time.
IOPC investigators attended the scene of the collision and reviewed video footage of the pursuit, police radio transmissions and obtained accounts from officers and members of the public during the investigation.
The evidence showed that contact between the police and the Yaris was limited to a short pursuit over a distance of approximately two miles and for less than two minutes from the initial sighting.
There was no direct contact and officers did not witness the crash. We concluded that while police presence may have affected the manner of Kyle’s driving, the evidence indicated the actions of officers were in line with the applicable policies and procedures.
During an initial inquest in March 2022, the Coroner discharged the jury and relisted the hearing for it to take place this week.
IOPC Regional Director Catherine Bates said: ““Our thoughts remain with Kyle’s family and friends and all those affected by the tragic incident.
“Our investigation was independent of the police and aimed to understand events leading up to the collision. We found the officers acted appropriately during and after the collision which followed a short pursuit.
“The evidence we gathered was provided to the coroner to assist with the inquest proceedings, which we hope has helped answer some of Kyle’s family’s questions about that day.”
We carefully considered whether there were any learning opportunities arising from the investigation. The investigation made an organisational learning recommendation to Cheshire Constabulary that defibrillators are available in every Roads and Crime Unit Vehicle.