November 16, 2019
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Police officer charged with murder in taser death of ex-Premier League footballer A police officer has been charged with the murder of former football star Dalian Atkinson, who died after being tasered following a disturbance at his father‘s house in August 2016.

Former Aston Villa striker Atkinson, 48, died following the confrontation with police outside his father‘s home in Telford, Shropshire with two officers facing charges, the Crown Prosecution Service has said.

Atkinson, who also played for Manchester City and Real Sociedad, passed away at the Princess Royal hospital in Telford on the same day. A police watchdog conducted an investigation into the matter and subsequently referred the case to the Crown Prosecution Service in October of last year. 

“The investigation gathered evidence which indicates that police with Mr Atkinson involved the use of a Taser, followed by a period of restraint and other uses of force,” the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) said in a statement. 

The Crown Prosecution Service also released a statement, saying that charges had been recommended against both officers involved and that a charge of manslaughter has also been laid against him as an alternative offence. 

“This decision was made following a careful review of all the evidence presented to us by the Independent Office for Police Conduct following an investigation,” the CPS said.

The two police officers, whose identities have been withheld, will appear before the courts in Birmingham on Tuesday. 

Legal counsel representing the Atkinson family said that they were happy that a conclusion to the case seems near but bemoaned the three-year span they have had to wait for justice.

“Dalian‘s family welcomes the decision to put the conduct of police officers before a jury but regrets that already more than three years have passed since Dalian died,” solicitor Kate Maynard said.

“They ask for their privacy to be respected and press for the criminal proceedings to progress without delay or obstruction.”

Conrad Contributor