Police create new call grading job after man's death


West Yorkshire Police has created a new job to ensure calls to the force are graded correctly after the death of a man in Bradford.

It comes after the Independent Police Complaints Commission reviewed how police responded to calls expressing concern about Hugh Cunningham.

Mr Cunningham, 29, was found at a house in the city on 20 August.

The review found no evidence to suggest that a quicker police response could have prevented his death.

Mr Cunningham was discovered at a house in the city's Bowling Hall Road. His death was not treated as suspicious.

Telephone calls

The IPCC said West Yorkshire Police had received a call from one of Mr Cunningham's relatives at about 2130 BST on 19 August, expressing concerns about him.

A further call was made to the force by a friend of Mr Cunningham at 0030 BST on 20 August, followed by a call at 0300 BST from another relative.

Police visited Mr Cunningham's house at about 0510 BST, and entry was forced into the house at 1000 BST when his body was found.

The IPCC found there was "no supervision to ensure resources were identified, deployed and controlled in a timely manner".

'Tragic case'

Its report added: "As a result, opportunities were missed to resolve the incident. However, there is no evidence to suggest this failure to deploy would have led to Mr Cunningham being found sooner or prevented his death."

IPCC Commissioner Nicholas Long said: "Resources were available at pertinent times, but the lack of a strategic overview meant staff were unaware of this during a busy period in which they were dealing with some serious incidents."

A West Yorkshire Police spokeswoman said: "We welcome the IPCC's findings that individual officers and staff acted appropriately in what is a tragic case.

"This happened on a particularly busy night, with officers called to several serious incidents including outbreaks of disorder in the Holmewood area.

"A new post has been created to ensure calls are graded correctly and responded to."

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