Olivia Checa-Dover acted for the Appropriate Authority in the police misconduct proceedings relating to the death in custody of 53-year-old Mark Needham on 23 July 2015.  The proceedings followed an independent investigation conducted by the IOPC.

Mr. Needham’s detention was authorised by the Custody Officer at Forth Banks Custody Suite, following his arrest on suspicion of being drunk and disorderly in a public place.  The accused officers were the two Custody Sergeants ultimately in charge of Mr. Needham’s care during his period of detention leading up to his sad death later the same day.

The proceedings were heard by a Panel sitting in Houghton-le-Spring, with the allegations in relation to each accused officer being heard separately for a total of 7 days.  The Panel found, in relation to PS Hunter, that the Standards of Professional Behaviour in relation to Duties and Responsibilities had been breached and that the same amounted to misconduct. In relation to a now retired Sergeant, the Panel found he had not breached the Standards of Professional Behaviour but that some aspects of his conduct would have been appropriate for determination under the police unsatisfactory performance regime.

Further details can be found here:

https://www.chroniclelive.co.uk/news/north-east-news/mark-needham-claire-hunter-police-16315251