Who was Dalian Atkinson?
Dalian was born on the 21st March 1968. In his teenage years, Atkinson would travel with other young talent from around the country for football training at Portman Road in the school holidays. Atkinson had a long football career playing in England for Ipswich Town, Sheffield Wednesday, Aston Villa and Manchester City, winning the Football League Cup at Villa in 1994. He also played for teams abroad; in Spain for Real Sociedad, in France, Turkey, Saudi Arabia and in South Korea.
Dalian Atkinson died aged 48, on 15 August 2016 after being tasered by police near his father's house in Trench, Telford. Police had responded to a call that Atkinson had threatened to kill his father, Ernest. Atkinson's older brother, Kenroy said “My brother had lost it. He was in a manic state and depressed out of his mind and ranting. He had a tube in his shoulder for the dialysis and he had ripped it out and was covered in blood. He got dad by the throat and said he was going to kill him. He told dad he had already killed me, our brother Paul and sister Elaine and he had come for him." After being tasered, Atkinson went into cardiac arrest on the way to the Princess Royal Hospital. He was pronounced dead 90 minutes after police were called.
What was the legal implication?
On the 7 November 2019, the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) said that criminal charges would be brought against two officers. One of the charges for one officer is murder and manslaughter, and for the second officer Actual Bodily Harm.
The decision comes just over a year after the case was referred to the CPS by the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC), who had conducted a criminal investigation over a period of 16 months. The IOPC has a statutory duty to investigate deaths following police contact. The family has been informed that the officers have not been named because they have indicated that they will ask the court to grant them anonymity. It is hoped the court will swiftly rule on this.
If you want to find out more about other victims of police and state violence in the UK, click here.
The proportion of BAME deaths in custody where restraint is a feature is over two times greater than it is in other deaths in custody. The proportion of BAME deaths in custody where use of force is a feature is over two times greater than it is in other deaths in custody. The proportion of BAME deaths in custody where mental health-related issues are a feature is nearly two times greater than it is in other deaths in custody.