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Steve Reed calls for criminal investigation into death of Olaseni Lewis

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THE MP for Croydon North has called for a criminal investigation into the death after police restraint of a South Norwood student. Steve Reed MP has called for the police watchdog's ruling over the 2010 death of Olaseni Lewis to be quashed so it can start afresh and interview police officers under caution. Mr Lewis, 23, died in August 2010 after being restrained by police at Bethlem Royal mental hospital, Bromley, where he had been admitted for "agitated" behaviour. A pathologist raised fresh concerns in July 2012 about the level of restraint used, but the Crown Prosecution Service would not take that into account because it was not part of the police watchdog's 2011 report, Mr Reed said. The Independent Police Complaints Comission (IPCC) wants to reinvestigate, he added, but the Met says it would be unlawful to re-refer the case. Speaking in parliament yesterday, Mr Reed said: "So we reach a highly unsatisfactory impasse. "To date the Lewis family have been failed by the mental health service and the entire criminal justice system. "Instead of the open inquiry this case deserves, we are treated to the unseemly spectacle of the IPCC, the CPS and the Metropolitan police fighting with each other and unable or unwilling to work together in the public interest to allow an effective investigation to take place. "In the meantime, a bereaved family have been waiting, with astonishing patience and great dignity, for over two years and eight months for an answer on how and why their beloved son now lies dead after they placed him in the care of a hospital when he showed early signs of mental ill health." He added: "I urge Ministers to use their offices to persuade the IPCC, the CPS and the Metropolitan police to work together to obtain a quashing order against the IPCC's original decision so that a criminal investigation into the Seni Lewis case can go ahead, followed by a full public inquest."

Steve Reed calls for criminal investigation into death of Olaseni Lewis


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