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IPCC Deaths during or following police contact: 2017/18

The IOPC has published its annual Deaths during or following police contact: statistics for England and Wales, 2017/18 report today.   The full report is available here.   Key findings of the report include:

  • There were 23 deaths in or following police custody, an increase of nine from last year. This is the highest number for a decade, but remains lower than the figure recorded in 2004/05 (36) when the IOPC began to report these deaths.
  • There were four fatal police shootings, compared to six last year. Three of this year’s shootings were from the Borough Market terrorist attack.
  • There were 29 road traffic fatalities, an overall decrease of three on last year; 17 of the deaths were from police pursuit-related incidents, a reduction from last year (28); eight fatalities resulted from emergency response incidents, the highest figure recorded since 2004/05.
  • There were 57 apparent suicides following police custody, the same as in the previous year, and in line with figures recorded over the last 10 years.
  • The IOPC also investigated 170 other deaths following contact with the police in a wide range of circumstances, up from 132 the previous year. Deaths are only included in this category when the IOPC has conducted an independent investigation. This figure therefore reflects a substantial increase in the number of independent investigations the IOPC has been carrying out, rather than any definite rise in people dying in such circumstances.
  As in previous years, mental health and links to drugs or alcohol were common factors among many of those who died. Seventeen people who died in or following police custody or other contact had been restrained or had force used against them by the police or others before their deaths. The use of force did not necessarily contribute to the deaths.

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