“Unacceptable” to use police cells for holding vulnerable people, says peer

11:24 15 October 2012

Lord Adebowale

Lord Adebowale


The man in charge of an investigation into how the Metropolitan Police deals with mental health incidents has said using cells as holding facilities is “unacceptable”.

Lord Victor Adebowale, chief executive of the social enterprise Turning Point, is leading the independent commission into mental health and policing at the Met.

The review is carrying out an examination of cases from over the last five years where someone with a mental health condition has either died or been seriously injured following contact with police.

It was announced following an inquest ruling this summer that the police had used “unsuitable force” to restrain Sean Riggs, a mentally ill musician from south London who later died in a police cell.

Lord Adebowale told The Independent newspaper: “The cells being used as places of safety is unacceptable. The police are perceived to be in a difficult position but frankly that’s not my concern.

“My job is to ensure that the police response is improved.”

He continued: “I haven’t approached this with deep sympathy for the police, of any other emergency service for that matter. I have approached this as a taxpayer who expects when they dial 999 to get an excellent response.”

Also on the panel are a number of independent experts and the Association of Chief Police Offcers (ACPO) lead for mental health.

The commission is expected to present its findings to the Met in February 2013. Its report will be made public.

Sign up for our news alerts today!

Our editors' picks for the day's top news delivered to your inbox or phone.

Sign up for email alerts Sign up for mobile alerts
2 3 4 5 6

Latest London news

Monday, November 30, 2015
There are delays on Tooting Bec Road after an accident

Tooting Bec Road is closed in south London after an accident involving a motorbike and a car.

What is this?

Near You Now

Don't Miss...


MAC Makeup

MAC are renowned for their flawless, fabulous make up that is used worldwide by the stars. You too can have the chance to have the perfect makeup to suit your needs with £1,000 to spend on all the glam goodies you like!

Read more

You are never far from an Argos, wherever in the country you may be. They are like a magical cavern where whatever you need they seem to have it out the back behind the counter. So why not put them to the test with this great MyOffers competition to win £1000 to spend in-store.

Read more

Latest Tech News