Trial of police officer accused of assaulting Dalian Atkinson to begin

Charges were brought against 31-year-old West Mercia Pc Mary Ellen Bettley-Smith after Mr Atkinson died following an incident in August 2016.

Prosecutors allege Bettley-Smith used unreasonable force in striking Mr Atkinson with a baton after he had been tasered by another officer near his childhood home in Meadow Close, Telford, Shropshire.

Mr Atkinson, 48, went into cardiorespiratory arrest and died around an hour later after being taken to hospital by ambulance.

At the time, West Mercia Police said officers were called amid concerns “for the safety of an individual”.

Bettley-Smith, who is on bail, will face trial on a charge of assault occasioning actual bodily harm on Monday.

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