Statement from the family of Thomas Orchard

7 October 2013

"A year after his death, we still mourn Thomas every day and feel his loss deeply.

"We find it difficult to understand why the investigative and legal processes are moving so slowly and why we know very little more now than we did a year ago. Meanwhile those who are potentially responsible for Thomas' death still work, despite the IPCC's recommendation for their suspension.

"So, in addition to our grief, we feel stressed, frustrated and drained; somewhat powerless and naive in the face of powerful and experienced institutions, the future seems daunting.

"However, we value the support, expertise and empathy of all staff from the charity, INQUEST, especially from our caseworker, Vic McNally, and from other families who have lost loved ones in police custody, as well as the support and concern from family, friends and work colleagues who continue to care both for us and with us. With their inspiration and help, we are determined to fight for the truth and we welcome the opportunity to bring Thomas' case to the attention of the wider public.

"Our privacy as a family is important to us, though. We will be doing no more media interviews in the immediate future and we ask members of the press to respect this decision."

Ends

Thomas Orchard died on 10 October 2012 following police restraint in Exeter.  

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