This publication contains the report of the Independent Police Complaints Commission into the events leading up to, and following, the death of Christopher Alder, who died whilst in custody at a police station in Hull in April 1998. Issues examined include the following: why Mr. Alder was offered no assistance as he lay dying on the floor of the police station; the conduct of two police investigations into his death; medical history and post mortem medical evidence; the subsequent court hearings held, including an inquest in 2000, the criminal trial of five officers in 2002 and a police disciplinary hearing in 2003; the treatment of family members in terms of police family liaison; and whether racism was a factor in the death and handling of the case. The report highlights serious failings, in terms of - the individual conduct of four of the police officers involved, which amounted to serious neglect of duty; subsequent mistakes by senior police officers in their response to investigating a death in custody; and major systemic failures including the presence of negative racial stereotyping in the treatment of Mr. Alder, the poor level of working practices between police and medical staff regarding transfers of responsibility for care, and failings in the police disciplinary system. A number of recommendations are made in light of this case, both for policing in general, as well as specifically for Humberside Police. The report criticises the failure of the Chief Constable of Humberside Police to apologise to the Alder family over the force's handling of the case, and calls for an unreserved apology to be made. Two volumes of appendices are available separately (HCP 971-II (ISBN 0102937397) and HCP 971-III (ISBN 0102937400)).
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