- Tyne Tees
The Chief Constable of Northumbria Police has refuted claims that PC David Rathband was not given enough support at the time of his death.
In a statement, Sue Sim said:
"After considering all the evidence HM Coroner Mr Armstrong is satisfied that David took his own life. HM Coroner did not criticise any individual or organisation.
"David suffered life changing injuries at the hands of Raoul Moat when he was shot while out on patrol on July 4, 2010. He faced these challenges with bravery and courage, and it was his wish that he return to work as a serving police officer.
"There have been criticisms levelled at Northumbria Police during the inquest by some of David's family. We fully understand the family's grief at David's death but we must refute any suggestion that we failed to support David or that the support we provided was inadequate.
"Such allegations are totally without justification. We provided the highest level of financial, welfare and rehabilitation support to David, far in excess of any legal duty.
"At the time of his death, David was a serving police officer. I exercised my discretion to retain him on full pay following his injury.
"However, the force can only offer such support - it was entirely David's decision whether or not to accept it. He was often very busy with other commitments such that he failed to attend scheduled appointments.
"At all times, we treated David with compassion. We are confident that we did everything we could in these exceptional circumstances to support David financially, medically and in every other way possible.
"David was a valued and skilled officer. We all repeat our deep sadness at his death."
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