Gloucestershire

Solihull man died after restraint by security guards

Mark Kentish Image copyright Glos News Service
Image caption Mark Kentish was referred to during the hearing as a "gentle giant"

A man died following "inappropriate" restraint by security guards at an industrial estate, an inquest has concluded.

Mark Kentish, 55, was held on the ground for almost 20 minutes by the guards until police arrested him.

A jury at Gloucestershire Coroner's Court said a "failure of care" led to his death in June 2016.

They said his death was caused principally by the stress of his struggle with the guards.

In an narrative conclusion, jurors said the restraint used by the two park staff at Stowfield Business Park in Lower Lydbrook, Gloucestershire, was "inappropriate in both method and duration".

Mr Kentish, from Solihull, West Midlands, had driven to the Wye Valley on 22 June 2016 to visit his disabled father in English Bicknor.

He was referred to during the hearing as a "gentle giant" and an extrovert, larger than life, and a childlike character.

Image copyright Google
Image caption Mark Kentish drove to Stowfield Business Park late at night where he was restrained

After the visit he drank heavily before driving to the Stowfield Business Park where, according to the staff there, he was drunkenly trying to tear down the fence around a three million volt electricity sub station.

One of the guards who tackled him, Paul Whiteside, said: "You could hear the fence being rattled and profanities being shouted.

"He was shouting about a dog and saying he was going to kill us all."

As police were dealing with Mr Kentish he became unwell and died at at 00:13 BST on 23 June, despite their efforts to resuscitate him.

In their conclusion, the jur said: "The medical cause of death was stress and struggle against restraint.

"Contributing factors were: coronary artery atheroma, large heart, mild emphysema, effect of obesity and the effect of alcohol and cocaine."

Mr Kentish's partner Kerry Jay and his family said in statement they felt "huge relief and gratitude" that "the truth has come out, of how he met his death".

Assistant coroner Caroline Saunders said she would write to the Security Industry Authority to ask why there was no programme of refresher training or education for guards as to the risks of restraint and positional asphyxia.

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