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Police officer faces manslaughter probe after Tasered man dies falling from window

Mr Abdi died after an officer used a Taser on him and he fell from a window in Lansdowne Road, Birmingham (Google Maps)
Mr Abdi died after an officer used a Taser on him and he fell from a window in Lansdowne Road, Birmingham (Google Maps)

A police officer is being investigated for manslaughter over the death of a man who fell from a window after being Tasered.

A constable used the electric shock device on Ayuub Hassan Abdi, 34, before he fell from an attic bedroom window at a property in Lozells, Birmingham, on 6 September. He died from his injuries in hospital the following day.

The Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) says it is investigating an officer from West Midlands Police for several offences, including unlawful act manslaughter.

The watchdog said: “A constable has now been advised that they are being criminally investigated for unlawful act manslaughter, common assault and assault occasioning actual bodily harm, in relation to their use of force during the incident.”

“The officer has also been served with a gross misconduct notice for potential breaches of police standards of professional behaviour.

“It does not necessarily mean that criminal charges or disciplinary proceedings will follow.”

The Crown Prosecution Service describes unlawful act manslaughter as an offence where a person intentionally did an unlawful and dangerous act that inadvertently resulted in death.

The IOPC added: “Our inquiries so far have established that police went to a multiple-occupancy house in Lansdowne Road after a report that two residents there had been attacked by a man with a knife.

“After the arrival of another police unit, two officers went upstairs to speak to Mr Abdi, who was in his bedroom on the third floor.

“The evidence indicates that during the conversation Mr Abdi moved towards an open window, and a Taser was then discharged by one of the officers.

“Moments later, Mr Abdi fell from the window, landing on the ground outside. An ambulance took him to hospital with critical injuries.”

The watchdog was notified of the incident the same day and began its investigation straight away.

A post-mortem examination was held a week later, and the results of a toxicology report have still to be returned. An inquest will be opened in due course.

Derrick Campbell, the watchdog’s director for the West Midlands, said: “We have been in contact with Mr Abdi’s family to express our sympathy and explain our role. Our thoughts are with them and all those affected by his death.

“We will carry out a thorough, independent investigation of all of the circumstances surrounding Mr Abdi’s death. This will include looking at the actions and decision-making of the officers present.

“Police may use force in the course of their duties, and we will examine whether any force that was used was reasonable, necessary and proportionate.

“Following the conclusion of our investigation, we will decide whether to refer the matter to the Crown Prosecution Service for a charging decision and we will determine whether any officer should face disciplinary proceedings.”

West Midlands Police have been approached for comment.

Additional reporting by PA