Police training call after death of missing man in Glasgow

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Police vehiclesImage source, George Clerk/Getty

The police watchdog has called for officers to receive additional training in assessing missing person reports following the death of a Glasgow man.

The 37-year-old was found dead in his flat more than 24 hours after he was initially reported missing.

The Police Investigations and Review Commissioner (Pirc) said officers should have been sent to his home when the alarm was first raised.

However, it was not possible to say if his death could have been prevented.

The man's body was found in his home at 18:05 on 10 October 2018 after a drugs overdose.

Reported missing

The Pirc report said he had been reported missing at 17:14 on 9 October by care staff who visited the man twice a day. They had not been able to contact him for 24 hours.

The man, who suffered from mental health issues, had previously been reported missing several times, but had always been found by police or returned home.

The police sergeant dealing with the missing person report was initially told by a constable that the man had been seen at the property between 02:00 and 04:00 that morning.

Image source, JG Shields/Getty

After discussions with an inspector, the sergeant concluded that the man did not fit the criteria for a missing person and decided to take no further action.

However, the Pirc report said the inspector had not checked that all appropriate steps had been taken to trace the man, including going to his flat, before he agreed to the sergeant's decision.

Care staff reported the man missing for a second time the following afternoon when they could not gain entry to his home, and highlighted their increasing concern for his wellbeing.

The sergeant then sent officers to the man's home. He was eventually found dead inside the flat after entry was forced at 18:05.

Following the investigation into the case, the commissioner recommended that all officers, in particular the sergeant, should receive training and guidance in assessing missing person reports.

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