A POLICE officer has been charged with murder over the death of ex-Aston Villa star Dalian Atkinson after he was shot with a Taser.
Dalian was hit with a 50,000-volt shock after reportedly threatening his elderly father in Telford in August 2016.
The former Aston Villa and Manchester City striker, 48, went into cardiac arrest and died in hospital 90 minutes later.
He had been struck on the OAP’s doorstep on the street he grew up on.
Relatives said that he was suffering from a number of health issues and had a weak heart when the Taser was deployed in the early hours of Monday August 16 in the Trench area of Telford.
A male police officer appeared at Birmingham Magistrates’ Court this morning charged with murder alongside a female PC who is charged with assault causing actual bodily harm.
The two West Mercia police constables, who cannot be named for legal reason and have only been identified as Officer A and Police Constable B, appeared at Birmingham Crown Court this afternoon.
Officer A has also been charged with unlawful act manslaughter as an alternative offence.
Both were granted unconditional bail and the case is adjourned until November 13.
Chief Constable Anthony Bangham, of West Mercia Police, said: “Our thoughts continue to remain with the family and friends of Dalian Atkinson at this difficult time.”
He added the force will not comment further and the force will make sure the officers “have appropriate support”.
Jenny Hopkins, from the CPS, said in a statement the decision to charge the officers comes after “a careful review of all the evidence” given to them by the Independent Office for Police Conduct following an investigation.
She added: “Criminal proceedings against the two police officers are now active and they have a right to a fair trial.
“It is extremely important that there should be no reporting, commentary or sharing of information online which could in any way prejudice these proceedings.”
Solicitor Kate Maynard, of Hickman and Rose, who represents Dalian’s family, said: “Dalian’s family welcomes the decision to put the conduct of police officers before a jury but regrets that already more than three years have passed since Dalian died.”
They asked for the “criminal proceedings to progress without delay or obstruction”.
In a statement issued by Mr Atkinson’s siblings after his death, they said: “Dalian grew to be a kind, caring and protective brother, with a lively personality: he was funny and cheeky. He always brought life and energy to family gatherings – when Dalian turned up, we knew there would be laughter and banter.”
In 2018, the IOPC said it referred a file of evidence relating to Dalian’s death to the CPS for it to consider charges against two of the three officers who were involved in detaining him.
The IOPC said the actions of the third officer were not referred to the CPS.
Derrick Campbell, IOPC Regional Director, said: “We appreciate the patience shown by all concerned during our thorough and independent investigation and the period it was with the CPS for consideration.
“We have kept Mr Atkinson’s family, West Mercia Police, and the Coroner informed throughout.”
Dalian also played for Sheffield Wednesday, Ipswich Town, Fenerbache and Real Sociedad.
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He scored in the 1994 League Cup final between Aston Villa and Manchester United where his team took home the trophy after a 3-1 victory.
Dalian scored 25 goals in 85 appearances for Aston Villa.
He joined the club in July 1991 for £1.6million before moving to Turkish team Fenerbahçe in 1995.
Former Aston Villa star Dalian Atkinson has died after being tasered by police.
Source The Sun.