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Once the Police have completed their investigations, they will refer the case to the Crown Prosecution Service for advice on how to proceed. We will then make a decision on whether a suspect should be charged, and what that charge should be.

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CPS advises no charges over death of PC Ian Terry

07/04/2009

The Crown Prosecution Service today announced that it will not bring charges in relation to the tragic death of PC Ian Terry who was fatally shot by a fellow officer during a training exercise on 9 June 2008.

CPS lawyer, Mark Auty, of the Special Crime Division said:  "Having reviewed a full file of evidence following a thorough investigation by the Independent Police Complaints Commission I have decided that there is insufficient evidence to charge the Greater Manchester Police or any individual officers with the offences which I considered in relation to PC Terry's tragic death.

"I considered an offence of corporate manslaughter against the Greater Manchester Police but there was insufficient evidence that PC Terry's death was caused by decisions taken at senior management level so I was therefore unable to bring a charge.

"In relation to the officer who shot PC Terry and those other officers who were involved with the training session on that day, I considered the offence of gross negligence manslaughter.  To bring this charge I would have to prove, along with other factors, that their actions on that day were grossly negligent.  There was insufficient evidence to prove this element.

"Finally I considered whether any of the officers involved in the training exercise could be charged with an offence of misconduct in public office.  There was insufficient evidence against any of the officers to prove that they wilfully neglected to perform their duties or wilfully misconducted themselves to such a degree as to amount to an abuse of the public's trust, without reasonable excuse or justification.

"The family of Ian Terry has been informed of my decision. I have extended my condolences to them and offered to meet with them to explain my decision further."

Under the Corporate Manslaughter and Corporate Homicide Act 2007, an organisation is guilty of corporate manslaughter if the way in which its activities are managed or organised causes a death and amounts to a gross breach of a relevant duty of care to the person who died.  A substantial part of the breach must have been in the way activities were managed by senior management.

PC Ian Terry, an officer with the Greater Manchester Police Tactical Firearms Unit, was fatally wounded in the torso whilst acting as a role player during a training session.  The exercise involved the use of round irritant personnel rounds fired from a shotgun with the intention of deflating the tyres of a vehicle carrying PC Terry.

The Health and Safety Executive will continue its investigation into PC Terry's death.

Ends

  1. PC Terry was 32 years old.
  2. For further information, please call CPS Press Office, on 020 7710 6091. Out of hours pager: 07699 781926
  3. The Crown Prosecution Service is the independent authority responsible for prosecuting criminal cases investigated by the police in England and Wales. It is responsible for:
    • Advising the police and reviewing the evidence on cases for possible prosecution
    • Deciding the charge where the decision is to prosecute
    • Preparing cases for court
    • Presenting cases at court
  4. The CPS consists of 42 Areas in total, each headed by a Chief Crown Prosecutor (CCP). In addition there are four specialised national divisions: Organised Crime, Special Crime, Counter-Terrorism and the Fraud Prosecution Service. A telephone service, CPS Direct, provides out-of-hours advice and decisions to police officers across England and Wales. The CPS employs around 8,400 people and prosecuted 1,091,250 cases with an overall conviction rate of 85.1% in 2007-2008. Further information can be found on our website.

    More about the CPS

  5. The CPS, together with ACPO and media representatives, has developed a Protocol for the release of prosecution material to the media. This sets out the type of prosecution material that will normally be released, or considered for release, together with the factors we will take into account when considering requests.

    Publicity and the Criminal Justice System protocol