Major investigation and public protection


The following documents remain current until further notice:

For further HSE work-related deaths resources see

Investigating deaths in prisons

A Memorandum of Understanding has been developed between NPCC and the Prisons & Probation Ombudsman (PPO).

The MoU confirms police SIO primacy in all death investigations but confirms that there is requirement to collaborate and share information with the PPO‘s investigator. The MoU covers the following points:

  • the police will approach all deaths in custody as a potential homicide
  • a joint strategy meeting between the police, PPO and Coroner must be held for all death in custody investigations. It may also be necessary to involve the CPS in some cases
  • the presumption is that all relevant information will be shared between the police and PPO unless there are specific reasons why this cannot happen

The PPO is an arms-length Body attached to the Ministry of Justice. The Ombudsman has jurisdiction to independently investigate the death of anyone in prison custody, immigration detention or who is a residence of an Approved Premise.

Page last accessed 20 January 2022