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Investigation into police action making 'significant progress'

It is clear that Mr Somers had mental health issues and he was very vulnerable. I am pleased the Safeguarding Adults Board has decided to set up a review and we will of course share our investigation findings with it.

Our investigation into police actions has made significant progress but we still have a lot of work to do. I have also arranged for two independent external experts in mental health and diversity issues to assist our investigation

– Rachel Cerfontyne, The Plymouth Safeguarding Adults Board

Police probed after death of Devon man

A last known image of Cheng Somers in Paignton railway station Credit: Police CCTV

An investigation has been launched into the behaviour of five police call handlers after the death of a man with mental health issues in Devon.

The Independent Police Complaints Commission is focusing on how police dealt with Cheng Somers in the weeks leading up to his death.

Mr Somers' body was found by a member of the public on August 22nd at a garden in Winner Hill, Paignton.

The IPCC is also looking in to how staff responded to a call from a member of the public on July 25th, who reported that a man outside his house was taking tablets.

They'll be looking too at how the police dealt with the missing person report made by Mr Somers' family on July 31 and complaints made by his family about the way their telephone calls to the police were handled.

Devon and Cornwall Police said they were unable to comment on the case.


Mother asks for help to solve her son's mystery death

Mystery still surrounds the death of a man from Plymouth who disappeared in July. Today his mother came forward with a desperate appeal to find out what happened to her son.

The body of Cheng Somers, also known as Valon Pitts, was discovered in a Paignton garden in August. Police are treating his death as unexplained. They have released fresh CCTV images of his last known movements as Jonathan Gibson reports.