Witnesses sought in police cell death

INVESTIGATORS today made a fresh appeal for witnesses who may have seen a man who died in police custody in the hours leading up to his arrest on suspicion of shoplifting.

INVESTIGATORS today made a fresh appeal for witnesses who may have seen a man who died in police custody in the hours leading up to his arrest on suspicion of shoplifting.

Officers from Norfok police have been tasked by the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) to examine how Ian Snelling died.

They are continuing to piece together the events of his last day alive, and want to trace a middle aged couple who may be able to help their inquiries.

Mr Snelling, 51, of Manwick Road, Felixstowe, was arrested at the VK1 off licence in Undercliff Road West, Felixstowe, on Friday September 1 after walking out with two bottles of sherry and into the fishing tackle shop next door.

Mr Snelling was arrested and two hours later was taken ill at Felixstowe police station and died.

IPCC Commissioner Len Jackson said: “We are particularly keen to trace a middle aged couple who attempted to enter VK1 at around 11.15am that morning.

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“The gentleman was dressed in a light blue short sleeved shirt and beige trousers and the lady in a dark jacket and beige trousers.

“In addition I would like to renew my appeal for anyone who was in the vicinity of the parade of shops between 11.15am and 11.40am that day and who may have seen Mr Snelling, or who may have seen him earlier that day.”

Anyone with relevant information is asked to contact Norfolk Police on 0845 456 4567.

No date has yet been fixed for the opening of an inquest into Mr Snelling's death and no details have yet been given of the results of the post mortem, which would reveal the cause of death.

Until an inquest is opened, the family cannot hold a funeral and pay their last respects.

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