Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC - formerly IPCC)
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Appeal for witnesses to police contact with man prior to his death in Blackburn

We have begun an independent investigation and are appealing for witnesses to an incident involving police contact with a man in Blackburn on Tuesday 24 March, who died in hospital soon after.

We understand that Peter Howieson, 52, was approached and spoken to by a police officer on Higher Church Street in Blackburn at around 10.30 am. He was then stopped for the purposes of a search on suspicion of drugs offences.

He became unwell at the scene and was taken to Royal Blackburn Hospital by ambulance but was sadly pronounced dead later that day.

We were notified by Lancashire Police of the incident the same morning and have begun to gather relevant information and CCTV. Initial accounts from the police constable involved and two security guards who were present have been gained.

Mr Howieson was riding a mobility scooter at the time of the incident. We are appealing for any witnesses to contact the IOPC on 0800 151 0018 or email:

IOPC regional director Amanda Rowe yesterday said:

“I send my condolences to Mr Howieson’s family and everyone affected by this sad event. In circumstances where a man has died soon after being detained by a police officer it is appropriate that we thoroughly investigate to establish what happened.

“We are keen that anyone who saw what happened on Higher Church Street that morning comes forward.”


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