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Smiley Culture verdict: suicide

Reggae singer Smiley Culture died of self-inflicted stab wound Credit: PA/PA Wire/Press Association Images

The 48-year-old singer, real name David Emmanuel, died from a single stab wound to the heart while police executed a search warrant at his Surrey home on March 15 2011.

The jury of five men and six women took 12 hours and 52 minutes to reach their majority verdict.

The jury foreman said:

"David Victor Emmanuel took his own life. Although the tragic events of 15 March 2011 were unforeseeable, giving one officer the responsibility of supervising Mr Emmanuel and at the same time the premises search book was a contributory factor in his death."

The inquest heard that he stabbed himself after being arrested at the property in Warlingham.

The police inquiries concerned allegations of conspiring to import class A drugs into the UK, the court heard.

Surrey Coroner Richard Travers said he was he would make a report to the Metropolitan Police on changes or improvements to the supervision of a prisoner at their home during a search.

Smiley Culture found fame with a string of 1980s hits including CockneyTranslation, and appeared on Top of the Pops.

The inquest, which began on June 12, took place at Woking Borough Council's Civic Offices.

Police officer gives evidence in Smiley Culture inquest

File photo of Smiley Culture Credit: PA/PA Wire

It's the third day of evidence in the full inquest into the death of musician Smiley Culture, real name David Emmanuel. Mr Emmanuel died from a stab wound to the heart as his home was raided by police.

The police officer who was present when he died, referred to as Witness 2 for legal reasons, is expected to give evidence today.

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Singer plunged knife into own chest

The coroner tells the jury that the singer suddenly started screaming at officers and then plunged a knife into his own chest.

The inquest jury is hearing from the first doctor on the scene who says the singer was already dead by the time he arrived.

The doctor tells the jury that the victim was lying on his back on the floor of the kitchen with the knife still in his chest.

IPCC found no police misconduct

Reggae star Smiley culture, in 1989 Credit: PA/PA Wire/Press Association Images

The 48-year-old reggae singer, real name David Emmanuel, died from a single stab wound to the heart while police searched his home in Warlingham, Surrey on March 15 2011.

His family was told that he stabbed himself while making a cup of tea in the presence of officers at the property.

Protesters outside Scotland Yard in April 2011 Credit: Stefan Rousseau/PA Archive/Press Association Images

In the wake of Mr Emmanuel's death, hundreds of protesters marched through central London to New Scotland Yard to call for a public inquiry.

But the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) found that no misconduct had taken place despite describing aspects of the operation as unsatisfactory.

In a letter to the singer's nephew, Merlin Emmanuel, Mike Franklin, IPCC commissioner, said:

"On this occasion the investigation has identified aspects of the operation which were not satisfactory, and criticism has been made of some of the officers' actions.

"However, these do not meet the threshold for misconduct under the police misconduct system."

Smiley Culture found fame with a string of 1980s hits including Cockney Translation and appeared on Top of the Pops.

His 1984 hit single Police Officer was an autobiographical song of how he was caught in possession of cannabis but let off when the officer recognised him as a reggae artist.

The full inquest is due to take place at Woking Borough Council office.