Police ‘stood over vulnerable man and watched him die’

Colin Holt
Colin Holt

originally by: Daily Mail 
published: 24 April 2013

Two police officers allowed a vulnerable man to suffocate and die in front of them without trying to help, a court has heard.

PCs Maurice Leigh and Neil Bowdery, of Kent Police, have pleaded not guilty to misconduct in public office over the death of paranoid schizophrenic Colin Holt in August 2010.

Maidstone Crown Court [was told] that police had been called to the 52-year-old’s flat in Gillingham, Kent, to bring him back to hospital as he was subject to a Mental Health Act order.

The jury were told today that Leigh, 54, and Bowdery, 29, acted with ‘reckless indifference’ towards Mr Holt by failing to reposition him and check on his welfare after he had been involved in a struggle with officers.

Prosecutor Duncan Penny as police constables, both officers ‘owed a duty of care’ to Mr Holt when they detained him.

Two days before his death, Mr Holt was admitted to the Medway Maritime Hospital and detained there for assessment under Section 2 of the Mental Health Act.

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