A report by the Police Investigations & Review Commissioner (PIRC) has found that police took all reasonable steps to trace a 22-year-old man suffering from mental health issues who ran off while they were taking him home and died after lying down in front of a train.

The report, released today (Friday 25 January 2019), said the officers responded promptly and correctly followed guidelines within Police Scotland’s Mental Health and Place of Safety Standard Operating Procedures. 

The report found that on the morning of 1 April 2018, police officers responded to reports of a man who was standing on the parapet of a bridge in Queen Margaret Drive in Glasgow and who seemed to be agitated. The man was known to police and recorded on their system as a vulnerable person.

Officers found the man and identified he was suffering from mental health issues and after speaking to his family, took him home. However, when they arrived, he managed to run away from them.

The officers chased the man but lost sight of him on the railway track near Jordanhill Railway Station. Police Scotland immediately classified the man as a high risk missing person and more police officers joined the search for the man.

At 0912 hours, a train driver spotted the man on the track near Jordanhill Station but was unable to stop the train on time. The man was struck by the train and died from his injuries.

The incident was referred to the PIRC by the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service (COPFS) for independent investigation on 3 April 2018. The investigation examined the actions of officers from the first point of contact with man, up until the discovery of his body. No recommendations were made.

Following agreement with the COPFS, a summary of the findings can now be published.

One of the findings of the report was that a member of police staff refused to cooperate with the PIRC investigation and provide a witness statement.

The PIRC said that where a member of the public has died or suffered serious injury, it is reasonable to expect that any police officer or member of police staff who is a witness to events or played a part in the police action, should co-operate with any subsequent investigation and provide an account of their actions.

You can read the full report and findings here.