Police chase had 'no direct impact' on Brighouse crash deaths, inquest concludes

The BMW lost control on a sharp a corner while being chased by police Credit: Yorkshire Live

Two men died after crashing their car in Brighouse as they sped away from police who had tried to stop them, an inquest heard.

Mohammed Sohail Aziz, 23, and Suhail Akhtar, 20, were in a BMW which crashed when being followed by police on Bradford Road in the early hours of 17 July, 2020.

The car was travelling at over 80mph and the driver lost control on a sharp, right-hand bend.

The inquest heard neither man was wearing a seatbelt. Both died at the scene.

Police officers had been following the car because of concerns over the manner of driving and activated their lights and sirens when it suddenly sped off.

It was later found that the two men had been dealing nitrous oxide, commonly known as laughing gas.

The coroner said police acted appropriately in pursuing the car Credit: Yorkshire Live

Assistant coroner Crispin Oliver said the actions of the police were appropriate and had no direct impact on the deaths of the men.

He said the causes of the crash were a loss of control while the car was being driven at excessive speed, failure to stop for police, failure of driver and passenger to wear a seatbelt and "impairment of judgement".

An investigation by the police watchdog also found that the officers involved acted in accordance with the relevant policies.

After the crash the officers tried to help the two men, who were trapped inside their car, but they could not get inside because it was so badly damaged.

Miranda Biddle, regional director of the Independent Office for Police Conduct, said: "This was a tragic incident in which two young men lost their lives and our thoughts remain with their families, friends and all those affected.

"Our investigation was independent of the police and aimed to understand events leading up to the collision. We found the officers acted appropriately and, after the collision which followed a short pursuit, did all they could to help the young men in extremely challenging circumstances.

"The evidence we gathered was provided to the coroner to assist with the inquest proceedings, which we hope has helped answer some of the families’ questions about that day."