THE police officer under investigation on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving when a man was fatally injured in a collision with a patrol car has not been suspended or arrested.

The police watchdog, the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC), confirmed that despite a criminal investigation the officer has not been arrested.

Sussex Police said they considered suspending the officer before placing him on restricted duties.

The officer is under investigation on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving after Arthur Holscher-Ermert was hit by a police car last Saturday night.

He was on foot after being pursued by police and the 27-year-old was hit by a different police vehicle.

Police watchdog the IOPC said it was investigating claims Arthur Holscher-Ermert was being chased by police after his car was flagged as uninsured.

Mr Holscher-Ermert was crossing a road in Peacehaven when he was involved in a collision with an unmarked police vehicle, the IOPC confirmed.

A number of unmarked police cars were in pursuit of Mr Holscher-Ermert after his Audi was spotted by police conducting an operation in the Newhaven and Peacehaven area.

A spokesman for the IOPC said the officer has been told he is under criminal investigation for the offence of causing death by dangerous driving.

The police constable is also being investigated for potential gross misconduct.

Sussex Police confirmed they decided not to suspend the officer from duty.

Mr Holscher-Ermert was on foot when the collision happened on the A259 South Coast Road at about 11.10pm on Saturday, April 30.

Eyewitnesses reported seeing officers try to handcuff the man as he lay dying in the street after being hit by the police car, claims that the IOPC are investigating.

He was confirmed dead at the scene a short time later.

The IOPC said they were investigating why Sussex Police were pursuing him and if police had restrained him while he was dying.

Graham Beesley, regional director of the IOPC, said: “Our thoughts are with Mr Holscher-Ermert’s family, and with everyone else who was involved in this tragic incident and has been affected by his death.

“We have provided his family with an update into the progress of our investigation and we will be meeting with them soon.

“As well as investigating the collision we are also examining the events leading up to it and police actions in the immediate aftermath.

“It is important we establish why Mr Holscher-Ermert was being pursued by the police including what, if any, information the police had about him or the vehicle he was driving.

“We will also consider whether the actions of officers afterwards were in line with policy and procedure.

“This will include looking at the aftercare given to him.

“We are aware of reports handcuffs were applied to Mr Holscher-Ermert at the scene and this will form part of our investigation.

“We understand the concern this incident has caused in the community and I would like to reassure everyone that we will carry out a thorough and independent investigation to establish exactly what happened and why.”

A post-mortem examination took place on Thursday and supporters and family of Mr Holscher-Ermert have organised a protest outside police headquarters in Lewes this Saturday.

Sussex Police said the force supports the IOPC investigation.

A spokesman said police and members of the public immediately administered first-aid at the scene.

The driver has not been suspended from duty.

The spokesman added: “The officer has not undertaken duties since the incident and will be placed on restricted duties that are not public-facing pending the outcome of the investigation.

“Suspension under police regulations was considered.”

Superintendent James Collis, of Sussex Police, said: “This is a tragic incident and distressing for Mr Holscher-Ermert’s family and friends. Our thoughts remain with them at this difficult time.

“While there has been much speculation, it is vital that all of the facts of the case can be fully, fairly and objectively investigated by the IOPC. That is the purpose of an independent investigation.

“We are providing every assistance to the IOPC to allow for a thorough investigation and for the family to receive the answers they need.

“We would ask the public to allow for the investigation to take its course.”

The IOPC said their investigation has so far reviewed dashcam footage from a member of the public who was driving in the area and footage from the police car involved in the collision as well as bodycam video footage from officers at the scene.

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