TODAY |

Three Taranaki police officers on trial over man's jail cell death decline to testify

Three police officers accused of manslaughter after a man died in their custody have opted to not take the witness stand and the defence has decided not to call any witnesses in their High Court trial in New Plymouth.

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Court started late today so that Allen Ball’s family could be together on the anniversary of his death. Source: 1 NEWS

The trial has ended for the day.

Allen Ball died on the floor of a cell at Hāwera Police Station exactly two years ago.

He was arrested as the result of a family harm incident in a highly intoxicated state.

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The Crown alleges the officers failed in their duty of care to a 55-year-old man who died in custody. Source: 1 NEWS

The Crown alleges the officers, who have name suppression, were grossly negligent in their duty of care to the 55-year-old, particularly in failing to provide medical care to a person in their custody in a vulnerable state.

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Their level of training has come under scrutiny after an intoxicated man died in custody in Hawera in 2019. Source: 1 NEWS

The ongoing trial resumed late this morning, with Justice Susan Thomas granting Ball’s family — including siblings from Australia who have flown over for the trial — to spend time together outside the courtroom on the anniversary of his death.