Hereford & Worcester

West Mercia Police investigated after train death

Contact between police and a man in the hours before his death is being investigated by the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC).

Luftar Coku, 39, died on 8 August, seven days after being hit by a train near Hereford railway station.

Two hours before the incident, a friend of Mr Coku called 999 due to concerns for his welfare.

Mr Coku was detained under the Mental Health Act at an address in Leominster and taken to hospital in Hereford.

A paramedic accompanied Mr Coku, while two police officers followed.

The IPCC said it was investigating West Mercia's response after the emergency call and whether procedures were followed in Mr Coku's detention under section 136 of the Mental Health Act.

'Tragic case'

It is looking at potential misconduct matters and investigators have served notices on the two police constables who attended hospital with Mr Coku.

It is also considering whether the handover by officers to medical staff followed procedures.

The matter was referred to the IPCC by West Mercia after conducting its own internal investigation.

The force said it would not be commenting during the IPCC inquiry, but would be co-operating fully.

"This is a tragic case in which a man died following contact with police and I would like to express my sincere condolences to Mr Coku's family at this difficult time," IPCC Commissioner Derrick Campbell said.

He added that attempts had been made to contact Mr Coku's family and the IPCC would be looking to update them.

British Transport Police said there were no suspicious circumstances surrounding Mr Coku's death itself.

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