Man paralysed after arrest demands a full public inquiry

originally published by: The Independent
31st January 2010

A man left brain damaged is demanding a public inquiry into “systemic failings” of police and private security staff which almost killed him.

Gary Reynolds, 41, an accomplished marathon runner and self-employed painter and decorator, was found in a coma in his cell a few hours after he was arrested for being drunk and disorderly in Brighton city centre in 2008.

His lawyers believe the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) failed to investigate properly the circumstances surrounding his arrest and subsequent treatment in the police station, which has resulted in a “deeply flawed report” that “fails to hold those implicated to account”.

Mr Reynolds is paralysed on his left side, cognitively impaired and will need full-time care for the rest of his life. No one from Sussex Police or Reliance Security Group, which runs the custody suite, is to lose their job.

Daniel Machover, a partner at Hickman & Rose Solicitors, said: “If he had died, there would be an inquest. If he could remember, he could give his own evidence. But because what happened to him was so serious that he came close to death and doesn’t remember anything, we believe these issues must be explored in public in order for the whole truth to come out and lessons to be learnt.”

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