Northampton

Cyclist death: Northamptonshire Police blameless over pursuit collision

Isham, Northamptonshire Image copyright Google
Image caption Arthur Bourlet died from the injuries he received in Isham, near Kettering

Police officers were not to blame for the death of cyclist killed by a fleeing burglar involved in a high-speed chase, an investigation found.

Gary Lynch was jailed earlier this year after police pursued the stolen 4x4 through Northamptonshire on 11 April.

Police cornered Lynch in Isham, but he reversed into Arthur Bourlet, 75, who died three weeks later.

The Independent Office for Police Conduct said police could not "foresee the presence of the cyclist".

Image caption The investigation found police could not have predicted the cyclist would have been in the village

Lynch, 55, hit police vehicles during the pursuit, damaging one so badly it had to be written off.

When police forced the Mitsubishi into Isham, Lynch reversed at speed, hitting Mr Bourlet.

Lynch, of no fixed address, was taken out of the car and arrested when it was eventually stopped by a police BMW striking the driver's side.

Mr Bourlet, from Burton Latimer, was taken by air ambulance to University Hospital Coventry but pronounced dead on 3 May.

Image copyright Northamptonshire Police
Image caption Gary Lynch pleaded guilty to killing cyclist Arthur Bourlet by dangerous driving

The IOPC said it was "of the opinion that there was no evidence that the officers could reasonably have been expected to foresee the presence of the cyclist".

It also noted "that officers had been conscientious in providing the cyclist with medical care".

The IOPC said no officer had behaved in way that would bring disciplinary proceedings, nor had any committed a criminal office.

Lynch pleaded guilty to causing death by dangerous driving, for which he was jailed for 11 years.

He also admitted burglary and was sentenced to 18 months, to run consecutively.

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