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Pre-inquest review for 86-year-old who died following bungalow fire

The scene of the fire in Fuchsia Lane, Ipswich Picture: LUCY TAYLOR

The scene of the fire in Fuchsia Lane, Ipswich Picture: LUCY TAYLOR

A pre-inquest review has been held into the death of an 86-year-old Ipswich man who died after a bungalow fire in 2016.

John Allen died at Ipswich Hospital following a blaze at his home in Fuchsia Lane in the early hours of March 30, 2016.

A man in his 60s also suffered serious injuries in the fire and was rushed to hospital but was later released.

A police investigation was launched following the tragedy and a 69-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of murder.

He was taken into custody at Martlesham Police Investigation Centre and interviewed by detectives.

He was later released under investigation and will now face no further police action.

A spokesman for Suffolk Constabulary said: "A man, now aged 71 years, from Ipswich, who was arrested on suspicion of murder following a fatal house fire at Fuchsia Lane in the town in March 2016, had his bail cancelled in May 2017 and will face no further police action.

"Eighty-six-year-old John Allen died in hospital following the fire and police carried out a comprehensive investigation into the cause of the blaze and the circumstances around the incident.

"The full findings of the investigation will be heard at an inquest into Mr Allen's death, which will take place in due course."

At the pre-inquest review at Suffolk Coroner's Court in Ipswich on Monday, May 13, assistant coroner Dr Dan Sharpstone said Mr Allen had been living with dementia, used a wheelchair and was profoundly deaf, using a pad and paper to communicate.

The court also heard he suffered a heart condition.

Dr Sharpstone has been asked to consider whether the investigation needs to be a Article 2 Inquest, relating to the European Convention of Human Rights (ECHR).

For that to take place, there must be evidence of systematic failures - not just that the system was not followed or that mistakes were made which contributed to an individual's death while they are under the care of the state.

Dr Sharpstone will assess evidence Mr Allen's family wish to submit to the court to see if it qualifies for an Article 2 hearing.

Dr Sharpstone said the full inquest hearing would likely be scheduled to take place in September this year.

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