1. ITV Report

Jacqueline Oakes murder case: 19 police officers and staff face misconduct sanctions

Jacqueline Oakes was murdered January 2014 Credit: West Midlands Police

Nineteen West Midlands police officers and staff face misconduct sanctions after their failure to deal properly with a woman suffering domestic violence in the months leading up to her death.

It follows an Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) investigation into contact West Midlands Police had with Jacqueline Oakes prior to her murder in Birmingham.

The evidence suggested that there was also a case to answer for gross misconduct for one, now retired, officer. No misconduct was identified for a further 20 officers and staff whose actions were investigated.

Following a referral from the force, IPCC investigators examined 19 reported incidents involving Ms Oakes and her ex-partner Marcus Musgrove, before he killed her in Edgbaston in January 2014.

The IPCC investigation made recommendations around identifying vulnerable individuals like Ms Oakes on police systems, so that officers can better address any associated risk.

This is an extremely sad case and one of the biggest investigations the IPCC has carried out in terms of the number of officers whose actions were examined and its complexity.

How police handle vulnerable victims like Jacqueline Oakes is of the utmost importance and the concerns raised warranted an independent investigation to ensure public confidence. West Midlands Police clearly also recognised this and has fully co-operated with our investigation.

We are pleased that the force has accepted our conclusions in terms of those officers and staff who we felt had a case to answer for their actions, and are satisfied that our recommendations for organisational improvement are being addressed.

– Derrick Campbell, IPCC Commissioner for the West Midlands
Marcus Musgrove Credit: West Midlands Police

51-year-old Jacqueline Oakes was murdered in January 2014 in a tower block in Edgbaston. Marcus Musgrove was sentenced to life in prison for her murder after weeks of controlling and abusive behaviour leading up to her death.

The IPCC‘s lead investigator identified significant organisational failings at that time in the way that West Midlands Police managed outstanding arrests of this nature, which resulted in arrest attempts not being made until the afternoon of 12 January.

Since then the force has introduced a more formalised process for dealing with such outstanding arrests.

The IPCC report recommends 19 officers and staff be dealt with through the misconduct process. Two police officers will appear before misconduct meetings and a further 17 officers and staff will be given management action.