The Independent Police Complaints Commission has concluded that Humberside Police officers did not breach any policies and made sustained efforts to save the life of a man during an incident in Hull in May 2011.
Andrew John Tombs, 38, died after a package containing heroin or diamorphine became lodged in his throat during the incident in Fountain Road, Hull on 10 May.
An inquest into Mr Tombs death concluded today (Tuesday 26 June) with a verdict of accidental death.
The IPCC carried out an independent investigation into the death following a referral by Humberside Police. This investigation established a police sergeant and a PCSO had stopped Mr Tombs and his friend as they suspected they were under the influence of drugs or drink.
Mr Tombs had initially carried on walking, apparently ignoring the officers. The sergeant followed him and put his hand on Mr Tombs shoulder to stop him. At this point Mr Tombs collapsed.
The officers attempted to identify what the problem was and gave him oxygen. They also tried to check inside his mouth as they suspected he may have swallowed something. However they could not see any obstruction.
An ambulance arrived within 10 minutes of being called and the paramedics and police officers continued in their resuscitation attempts. It was at this stage that a paramedic using a laryngoscope located the package in Mr Tombs throat. The paramedic told the investigation that the package was not visible to the naked eye.
Mr Tombs was taken to Hull Royal Infirmary where he was pronounced dead.
The IPCC investigation concluded that the officers were entitled to stop Mr Tombs and his friend, no policies had been breached and the officers had made sustained efforts to assist Mr Tombs following his collapse.
IPCC Commissioner Nicholas Long said: "It is unclear when Mr Tombs put the package in his mouth but it is clear the first the officers knew there was a problem was when he collapsed. From that point on concerted efforts were made to assist Mr Tombs. The paramedics who attended have praised the quality of the resuscitation delivered by the officers. They did everything they could to save Mr Tombs and should be praised for that.”
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