Tayside and Central Scotland

Watchdog investigates police response to van man's death

Penman Image copyright Supplied
Image caption David Penman's body was discovered in a van parked in Dunipace, Stirlingshire

An investigation is under way after a man was found dead in a van, days after police were reportedly contacted over concerns for the vehicle.

David Penman's body was found on 15 December in Dunipace, Stirlingshire,

It is understood calls were made to police by members of the public who reported seeing the parked vehicle between 13 and 15 December.

The Police Investigations & Review Commissioner will look at the circumstances surrounding the death.

The vehicle is not thought to have been involved in a road accident.

The police watchdog will report its findings to the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service (COPFS).

Police Scotland said it would provide "any necessary assistance."

Independent investigation

A Pirc spokeswoman said: "The Crown Office and Procurator ‎Fiscal Service has instructed Pirc to carry out an independent investigation into the circumstances surrounding the death of a 46-year-old man following the discovery of his body in Dunipace, near Denny, on Thursday 15 December 2016.

"A report on the Commissioner's findings will be submitted to the COPFS in due course.‎"

The new inquiry follows an "exhaustive" Pirc investigation into the circumstances surrounding the M9 crash near Stirling which killed two people in July 2015.

Lamara Bell, 25, was found critically injured in a car three days after the crash and died later in hospital.

Her partner John Yuill, 28, was found dead in the car.

Police had failed to follow up a call received about the crash.

Image caption Willie Rennie MSP has called for a "thorough investigation"

Referring to the latest investigation, Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie MSP said: "My thoughts are with the family and friends of the deceased.

"It send shivers down the spine to have another fail-to-respond case so close to the scene of the M9 crash last year.

"The circumstances may be different but failing to respond to such an incident requires a thorough investigation."

'Any necessary assistance'

Supt Martin Fotheringham said: "Police Scotland has reported the circumstances surrounding the discovery of a 46-year-old man's body within a van, which was parked in the Dunipace area of Denny on Thursday 15th December 2016, to the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service.

"The matter has now been referred to the Police Investigations & Review Commissioner.

"We will provide any necessary assistance to the Pirc as they conduct their investigation and we await the outcome of their report.

"Our thoughts are with the gentleman's family at this time."

In a statement issued through Pirc, Mr Penman's family said: "David was a much-loved father, son and brother, and as a family we are devastated by his loss.

"We are now trying to come to terms with this loss and would ask for our privacy to be respected to allow us to grieve in peace."

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites