England

Request to remove gun from grooming suspect missed

Long Mynd near Church Stretton Image copyright Google
Image caption The Long Mynd near Church Stretton where Matthew Kendall was found dead

A message between police forces to remove a gun from a man who later shot himself was missed, the police watchdog has said..

Matthew Kendall, of Wolverhampton, died near Church Stretton, Shropshire, after his arrest over grooming allegations.

A request to remove the gun was issued by Greater Manchester Police to West Midlands Police, the Independent Police Complaints Commission said.

It added there had been no failing on the part of individual officers.

Suicide verdict

Mr Kendall, 39, a registered firearms holder who had worked as a martial arts coach, was arrested on 9 October in Bolton on suspicion of grooming and released on bail, Greater Manchester Police said.

While he was in custody the force emailed West Midlands Police to ask for any firearms at his home to be removed.

His home was searched but attending officers were not aware of the request.

The next day Mr Kendall contacted West Mercia Police to report disturbances at his business premises. On 11 October, a member of the public found him with a fatal shotgun wound.

The IPCC said the Greater Manchester force properly conducted a full risk assessment that did not raise any concerns about self-harm. The request to remove firearms had been precautionary and based on an officer's experience with vulnerable people.

It found the missed message was due to communication processes and the volume of activity on the log at the relative time.

An inquest in Telford recorded a verdict earlier that Mr Kendall died by suicide.

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