A police gross misconduct hearing has acquitted the four officers allegedly involved in the crash that caused teenager Henry Hicks’ death, who was riding his moped along Caledonian Road. The officers were accused of pursuing Hicks without permission in December 2014. He crashed moments later in Wheelwright Street and died.
Hearing chair Eileen Herlihy concluded “there was always a significant distance between the moped and car. All the evidence we have shows that the two cars were not engaged in a pursuit.”
A jury at St Pancras Coroners Court had previously concluded in June 2016 that Hicks knew he was being pursued by police officers, who did not seek the required permission from central command. Hicks had been subject to 89 stop-and-searches in the three years before his death, but was never charged with an offence.
Hicks’ family were barred from the police hearing in order to protect the anonymity of the four officers after some supporters of the ‘Justice for Henry Hicks’ campaign had issued threats against the officers involved. The family followed the proceedings via a videolink in a separate building – a decision which they said left them feeling “isolated and excluded”.
Henry Hicks’ sister Claudia later made a statement through INQUEST, a charity that specialises in state-related deaths: “We don’t understand how the panel can have reached a different conclusion to that of the inquest jury. We won’t stop fighting for accountability for Henry’s death. We miss him every day.”