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Sussex police officers face potential charges in fatal Peacehaven incident

The Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) has announced that it is referring a file of evidence to the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) regarding the potential charges against two Sussex Police officers in relation to the tragic death of Arthur Hölscher-Ermert.

On the evening of April 30, 2022, 27-year-old Mr. Hölscher-Ermert was fatally struck by a Sussex police vehicle in Peacehaven. The incident occurred shortly after Mr. Hölscher-Ermert had exited an Audi on Bramber Avenue while being pursued by another police vehicle.

During their investigation into the incident, the IOPC informed one of the officers involved that they were under criminal investigation for the offense of causing death by dangerous driving. Additionally, this officer was later advised that they were also being investigated for the offense of unlawful act manslaughter. The second officer was informed that they were under criminal investigation for the offense of perverting the course of justice.

Mel Palmer, the IOPC regional director, expressed, “Following the conclusion of our investigation and after carefully considering the evidence, we have decided there is an indication that both officers may have committed a criminal offense.”

Palmer emphasized that the referral to the CPS does not automatically imply that criminal charges will be brought against the officers. It will now be the responsibility of the CPS to review the evidence and determine whether charges should be pursued, as well as which specific charges should be considered.

Throughout the investigation, the IOPC has remained in close contact with the family of Arthur Hölscher-Ermert, keeping them informed about the progress of the case. The officers involved have also been notified of the IOPC’s decision.

“Our sympathies remain with everyone affected by this incident,” Palmer concluded.

The CPS will now undertake a thorough assessment of the evidence provided by the IOPC before deciding whether to proceed with charges against the Sussex Police officers involved in the death of Arthur Hölscher-Ermert.

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