Damning IPCC report exposes “fundamentally flawed” Derbyshire Police bail procedure
13 July 2017
The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) has severely criticised Derbyshire Police over their past bail procedures following a complaint by the family of Jagdip Randhawa – who died after being punched by a boxer who was on bail for a previous serious assault.
Jagdip, a 19-year-old student, was assaulted by professional boxer Clifton Ty Mitchell in 2011. At the time, Mitchell was in breach of bail conditions to which he was subject as a result of his alleged involvement in a previous violent attack. Jagdip died five days later.
The force had strongly argued against him being granted bail, stating that “the defendant has shown that he has a history of committing violent offences and a total disregard to any orders imposed by the courts”. However they then failed to seek revocation of his bail, despite repeated breaches.
In a report published today, the IPCC has upheld the family’s complaint about the police’s failure to manage Mitchell’s bail – and said a now retired officer has a case to answer for misconduct over his handling of the family's complaint.
After Jagdip’s death, the police told his family Mitchell had breached bail on seven previous occasions – but the IPCC now says there were at least 24 breaches in the preceding five months. Records of potential previous breaches have been lost by the police.
The IPCC’s report described Derbyshire Police’s 2011 bail procedure as “fundamentally flawed” and “not fit”. It said the process was “so flawed that none of the staff operating under it appeared to recognise the ongoing issues with this one individual and see the obvious opportunities missed”.
Clifton Ty Mitchell was convicted of manslaughter and sentenced to seven years in prison in 2012. He was released last year and is trying to resume his career as a boxer, training with Team Fury.
Jagdip’s sister, Majinder Randhawa, approached Liberty in November 2014, after battling in vain for answers from Derbyshire Police about the bail breaches for 18 months.
The IPCC, who also looked at the force's handling of the complaint, said the officer appointed to investigate failed to record it and deal with it “in a sufficiently robust manner”.
They also found he had placed the onus of communications on the grieving family, rather than acting on it himself.
The Randhawa family and Liberty achieved a fresh inquest into Jagdip’s death last year under Article 2 of the Human Rights Act. It found Derbyshire Police missed opportunities to arrest Mitchell, despite numerous breaches of his bail.
Majinder Randhawa, Jagdip’s sister, said: “Our family will always be haunted by not knowing what might have happened if Mitchell had been arrested as he should have been.
“It’s important that the IPCC’s report highlights the significant failings of Derbyshire Police – but it’s devastating to know that Jagdip’s death was avoidable.
"We believe that Jagdip would still be here today, if Derbyshire Police had correctly managed Mitchell while he was on bail. It's impossible for us to ever get over that."
Debaleena Dasgupta, Liberty lawyer and solicitor for the family, said: “This is a strong report from the IPCC about a bail procedure that frankly wasn’t fit for purpose. We hope their recommendations for further improvements will be implemented.
“I am pleased the conduct of a police officer who failed a grieving family seeking answers was also criticised. But it is frustrating that no action can be taken as the officer retired.”
The report comes ahead of the annual memorial football tournament organised by Jagdip this Saturday at Cranford Community College in Hounslow.
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