Open Democracy corrects claim about deaths in police custody

19 August 2016 | Phoebe Arnold

We factchecked a claim that there have been about 1,500 deaths in police custody since 1990, and about one third of those who died were from black and minority ethnic backgrounds.

This claim appeared in more than one place, including in an article published by Open Democracy in April, which had been shared while the recent Black Lives Matter protests were happening.

We found that about a tenth of identified deaths in police custody were people from black and minority ethnic backgrounds. This is based on figures from the charity INQUEST, which has identified 1563 deaths in total during or following police contact in England and Wales since 1990.

We are grateful to Open Democracy for correcting the article yesterday.


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