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Police watchdog to manage investigation into 2015 election expenses of Devon and Cornwall's PCC

Alison Hernandez was elected police and crime commissioner for Devon and Cornwall Police in May Credit: ITV News

The police watchdog has confirmed it will manage an investigation into allegations that Alison Hernandez - the Police and Crime Commissioner for Devon and Cornwall - failed to properly declare election expenses while she was employed as an election agent in 2015.

At the time of the alleged offence Ms Hernandez was employed as an election agent for the Conservative candidate in the Torbay constituency.

The allegations against her were referred to the IPCC by the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner following her election as PCC on 5 May.

As Ms Hernandez is now a Police and Crime Commissioner, the IPCC will manage an investigation looking at whether she properly declared election expenses whilst acting as an election agent during the 2015 General Election.

On completion of the investigation we will decide whether any matters should be referred to the Crown Prosecution Service for its consideration

– IPCC Deputy Chair Sarah Green

The managed investigation will be undertaken by West Mercia Police under the direction and control of the IPCC.

IPCC investigation in connection with Plymouth murder

Keith Dance was found dead at a house in Molesworth Road in Stoke on 11 March Credit: ITV News West Country

The Independent Police Commission has started an independent investigation into the involvement of police before the death of Keith Dance in Molesworth Road, Plymouth.

IPCC Commissioner Rachel Cerfontyne says,

"There is a criminal investigation being carried out by the police service and two people have been charged with Mr Dance's murder. The police investigation will take priority and we will make arrangements to share relevant evidence for the two separate investigations.

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IPCC probe after man dies in custody

A man who was "restrained" by Devon and Cornwall Police before being taken into custody has died, the police watchdog confirmed.

Thomas Orchard was arrested by the force in Exeter city centre on October 3 on suspicion of a public order offence.

But he was later taken to the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital when officers became concerned that the 32-year-old was not responding to them while in his cell.

An Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) spokesman said its investigation would aim to discover whether or not Mr Orchard's head injuries were sustained during his arrest. He died in hospital at 6pm on Wednesday, the IPCC said.

Eyewitness account of Exeter arrest

Eyewitnesses report hearing lots of shouting followed by the scene of a man being laid out on the ground on the corner of Paris Street and Sidwell Street, in Exeter yesterday. Police are describing this as a violent arrest.

The man was taken into custody where it's believed he collapsed and was taken to the Royal Devon and Exeter hospital. He is described as being in a serious condition.

Eyewitness John Hunt spoke to our reporter Seth Conway.

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IPCC statement on investigation

We were notified by Devon and Cornwall Police of an incident in Exeter city centre yesterday where a man was taken to hospital after being arrested. The man remains in a serious condition. The IPCC deployed investigators yesterday to Exeter and an independent investigation is underway. We hope to issue further information today."

– IPCC Spokesperson