Rashan Charles ‘did not swallow controlled substance’

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Rashan CharlesImage copyright Met Police
Image caption Rashan Charles died after being apprehended by police in Dalston

A man apprehended by police in an east London shop did not swallow a controlled substance before he died, the police watchdog has said.

Rashan Charles was followed by officers in Dalston on 22 July and became ill after putting an object in his mouth.

His death sparked a number of protests, including one which turned violent.

An item removed from his airways was not a controlled substance, the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) has found.

It did not reveal what the item was but said it was awaiting the preliminary results of a post-mortem examination, which was carried out on Monday.

Image copyright PA
Image caption Violence broke out in Kingsland Road during a protest over the death of Mr Charles

“The IPCC has now received results of forensic analysis of an object that was removed from Rashan’s airway by paramedics,” a statement said.

“The object did not contain a controlled substance.”

Mr Charles’s family has been informed.

‘Follow the evidence’

Officers had followed the 20-year-old on foot after attempting to stop a car on Kingsland Road.

CCTV showed Mr Charles entering a shop pursued by a uniformed police officer, after which there was a struggle on the floor.

In the footage, he appeared to put his hand to his mouth and became ill shortly after.

A force medic provided first aid at the scene but Mr Charles died later in hospital.

The IPCC said it was continuing to collect and analyse evidence, including “police body worn footage” and other CCTV.

The statement added: “We will independently examine the circumstances of this incident, we will follow the evidence, we will consider whether there is an indication there may have been misconduct or criminality and we will seek to answer the questions that Rashan’s family and the community of Hackney understandably have”.

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