Man found dead shortly after police attendance to address – Cleveland Police, January 2023

Published 12 Sep 2023

On 8 January 2023, Cleveland Police received a 999 call from a woman who stated her partner had been threatening and throwing cans at her following an argument. She described him as being intoxicated. Two Cleveland Police officers attended the address as a domestic dispute incident. When the officers arrived, the couple were spoken to separately, no offences were identified, and the officers transported the man to his home and watched him walk inside his flat before they left. 

On 9 January, the man was found dead in his flat.

We obtained accounts from the officers involved and examined body worn video footage, incident logs and police reports. CCTV footage was also obtained from outside the man’s flat, which showed no third party had entered prior to him being found dead.

We considered the officers’ actions alongside local and national police policies, procedures and guidance and found that they had complied with them as required.

The IOPC did not investigate the man’s death as that was investigated separately by Cleveland Police and HM Coroner.

The investigation concluded there was no indication the officers may have behaved in a manner that would justify the bringing of disciplinary proceedings or committed a criminal offence. All officers were treated as witnesses and cooperated fully with this investigation. 

We concluded our investigation in February 2023 and shared our report with Cleveland Police who agreed with our findings. 

The inquest into the man’s death was held in August 2023 and the Coroner reached a conclusion that his death was drugs related.

We carefully considered whether there were any learning opportunities arising from the investigation. We make learning recommendations to improve policing and public confidence in the police complaints system and prevent a recurrence of similar incidents. In this case no learning was identified.

IOPC reference