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No causal link between officers' actions and Caroline Flack’s death, police watchdog finds

Officers last had contact with the 40-year-old when she was arrested for an alleged assault on her boyfriend in December 2019.

Image: SIPA USA/PA Images

Updated Mar 4th 2020, 1:31 PM

NO INVESTIGATION WILL be held into police contact with TV presenter Caroline Flack after a watchdog found there was “no causal link” between officers’ actions and her death.

The Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) announced today that there is no need to formally investigate contact between Metropolitan Police officers and the 40-year-old.

Officers from the force last had contact with Flack on 13 December 2019, when she was in custody following an alleged assault on her boyfriend Lewis Burton.

It has been reported that in the aftermath of that incident, she told officers she would take her own life. She died two months later on 15 February.

The announcement came after the Crown Prosecution Service said it would review the decision to bring charges against the Love Island presenter over the incident.

An IOPC spokesman said: “Having considered a mandatory referral from the Metropolitan Police (MPS), we decided the matter did not require investigation by the Independent Office for Police Conduct because there was no indication of a causal link – directly or indirectly – between the actions or omissions of the police and Caroline Flack’s tragic death.

“MPS officers last had contact with Ms Flack on 13 December 2019, when she was in custody, nearly two months before her death.

“While in custody on December 13, officers arranged for her to see a healthcare professional and relevant policy and procedure was followed to give her further guidance.

“On this basis, we have returned this referral to the MPS Department for Professional Standards (DPS) for them to deal with the matter in whatever manner they decide.”

The Metropolitan Police said its internal standards department had found no further action is necessary over the case.

A spokesman said: “The DPS has concluded that a formal investigation is not required.

A comprehensive review of the circumstances surrounding all police contact with Ms Flack following her arrest and detention has already taken place as part of the referral process.

“No conduct has been identified on the part of any officer. In line with normal processes, if any new information should come to light it will be considered and action taken as appropriate.”

After her death, Flack’s management team criticised the CPS for conducting a “show trial”, with Burton having said he did not support a prosecution and Flack having denied the charge against her.

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Following a freedom of information request from the Daily Mirror, it is understood the CPS will look into its handling of the matter through a post-case review panel, a procedure which is not uncommon, especially in regard to complex or sensitive cases.

It is understood the outcome of the review will not be made public.

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