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Caroline Flack: Met Police told to reinvestigate mother’s complaint about decision to charge star with assault

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A watchdog has told police to reinvestigate a complaint by the mother of Caroline Flack, who said her daughter was treated differently because she was famous.

The presenter was facing prosecution for assaulting her boyfriend when she took her own life in February 2020.

A coroner ruled she killed herself after finding out that prosecutors were going to press ahead with the assault charge over an incident involving her boyfriend, Lewis Burton.

An inquest heard that Flack was concerned about the publicity that an upcoming trial would bring. Pic: AP
Image:
An inquest heard that Flack was concerned about the publicity that an upcoming trial would bring. Pic: AP

CPS had wanted to give Flack a caution

The IOPC told Sky News Christine Flack submitted two reviews requesting they consider how the Metropolitan Police handled her complaints about the force’s response.

As a result, they told the Met to reinvestigate the process involved in the decision to charge Flack.

The Crown Prosecution Service had wanted to give her a caution but that decision was appealed by the Met.

During the inquest into her daughter’s death, Christine Flack told the court her daughter “was not an abuser” and accused the police and prosecutors of having it “in for” her due to her “celebrity status”.

Mrs Flack told reporters her daughter “couldn’t see a way out” of the bad press from the trial.

The day before she died, Flack found out she would be prosecuted after allegedly hitting Burton with her phone as he was sleeping due to concerns he had cheated on her.

Lawyers applied for the case to be tossed out and friends had been expecting that it would be dropped.

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Why police say Flack was charged

Flack admitted hitting Mr Burton when officers were called to her home, but police told the inquest there was no “clear” admission of guilt during her police interview, which was one of the factors in the decision to charge her.

Other factors included the violence involved, that Mr Burton was asleep at the time of the alleged offence and that a caution is rare for a domestic violence case – which this incident was considered as.

A Met Police spokesperson said: “Following a review, the IOPC agreed with the MPS that service was acceptable in relation to seven areas of the complaints relating to the response and handling of the incident by the MPS.

“The IOPC has directed the MPS to reinvestigate one element of the complaints. This relates to the process involved in appealing the CPS decision to caution Ms Flack.

“We will re-examine this element of the investigative process.

“Our thoughts and sympathies remain with Caroline’s family.”

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