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Home   Canterbury   News   Article

Pensioner Rose-Marie Allan complains after police prevented her from hugging dying partner James Boland at Kent and Canterbury Hospital

25 January 2014
by Gerry Warren

Rose-Marie Allan had rushed to Kent and Canterbury Hospital after 70-year-old James Boland was involved in a road accident.

But she claims the police presence meant she was unable to cuddle her partner of 39 years, who had been arrested hours before for driving while disqualified.

Rose-Marie Allan, who is grieving for her long-term partner

Rose-Marie Allan, who is grieving for her long-term partner

He died minutes after she arrived.

Fighting back tears, the mum-of-six, who lives in Woodview, Hoath, said: “When I arrived, he was nearly gone.

“I wanted the policemen to move away so I could cuddle him but was told they couldn’t because they were talking to him – but it wasn’t as if he would have run off.

“But I did stroke his hand and I think he squeezed mine.”

Retired cabbie Mr Boland was accompanied to the hospital by officers after he was arrested following a crash on September 23. He died early the next day.

Mrs Allan is upset she was not told of his arrest or admission to hospital until hours after the accident.

Retired cabbie James Boland

Retired cabbie James Boland

She said: “I didn’t even know James had been banned from driving but the police told me it was just three days before he was arrested.

“He had a severe phobia of hospitals and would have been in a panic, and if I could have got to him earlier it might have helped calm him.”

Mrs Allan, who used to be a carer in an old people’s home, said she and Mr Boland had planned to marry this month.

She said: “Just before all this, James said we should get married because, even though we had been together for nearly 40 years, we hadn’t got round to tying the knot.

“He bought me a ring and we planned to go to the register office in January.

“But now he’s gone and I’ve got nobody. I’ve been in tears every night since.”

But police have been cleared of any blame after Mr Boland's death.

An investigation was carried out by the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC).

When police arrived at the scene he was being treated in an ambulance.

“I wanted the policemen to move away so I could cuddle him but was told they couldn’t because they were talking to him – but it wasn’t as if he would have run off" - Rose-Marie Allan

Officers arrested him for taking a vehicle without consent, driving without a licence and driving while disqualified, but he was not handcuffed or removed from the ambulance.

The case was referred by Kent Police to the IPCC, which launched an independent investigation into the nature and extent of police contact with Mr Boland before his death.

The investigation concluded in December but the IPCC waited to release the findings until an inquest into Mr Boland’s death had been heard.

The IPCC’s investigation concluded that Kent Police officers had minimal contact with Mr Boland and there was no indication police had contributed to his death.


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