Funeral for Kingsley Burrell after Birmingham detention death
- 31 August 2012
- From the section Birmingham & Black Country
The funeral of a man who died after being detained by West Midlands Police has taken place in Birmingham.
Kingsley Burrell was detained under the Mental Health Act in March 2011 after officers attended an incident in Icknield Port Road, in the city.
The 29-year-old died in hospital four days later.
His family has said they are angry a full inquest has not yet been held and the exact circumstances around his death are still not known.
Kedesha Brown-Burrell said her brother's body was only released to his relatives at the last pre-inquest hearing with the Birmingham coroner on 18 July.
The service was held at Hampstead Road Baptist Church, Handsworth with 250 mourners and relatives taking part a march along Soho Road to a nearby cemetery afterwards.
Traffic on the road outside stopped to allow the coffin, which arrived on a silver carriage drawn by three white horses, to get by.
After the funeral Mr Burrell's sister said it was not the end but a beginning of a new chapter.
"Finally able to put Kingsley to rest, its the beginning of a closure," she said.
"Me and my family have a long haul ahead of us because the inquest hasn't happened yet but we will continue to try and get some answers."
The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) is investigating and has gathered more than 100 witness statements.
A spokesman said a number of lines of enquiry "are still active" and a medical report is due shortly.
A post-mortem examination has also been conducted but details not made public.
An investigation by the Dorset Police force, which was asked by the IPCC to look at roles of non-police personnel involved in the death, is still ongoing, they added.
Speaking before the service, Maxi Hayles, family spokesman and chairman of Birmingham Racial Attacks Monitoring Unit said: "It has been a long time, around 18 months, and we still don't know why the IPCC is taking so long.
"All I can say is, justice delayed is a justice denied.
"The family need answers because we have not even reached the inquest yet.
"It seems too long until this will be concluded."
Mr Burrell was detained by police under the Mental Health Act on 27 March, 2011 after calling 999, saying he was concerned about or felt threatened by several young men nearby.
He was then taken to the Mary Seacole mental health unit in Birmingham after being sectioned.
Police said that three days later, officers were called to support staff at a mental health unit over a disturbance involving Mr Burrell.
He was subsequently transferred to a hospital where he died the following day.
Ms Brown-Burrell said the family has lost hope in finding answers over his death which also led them to holding two protest marches in Birmingham city centre earlier this month and in August 2011.
The IPCC had no objection to Mr Burrell's body being released to his family, a spokesman said.