IPCC investigates police call centre workers after death of Anne-Marie Birch at Broadstairs home
Call centre workers are being investigated by the police watchdog after a woman was found dead at a Broadstairs home.
Ann-Marie Birch was strangled and beaten before being discovered at the house in Whiteness Road, Kingsgate at around 1.30pm on November 7.
A post mortem found the 47-year-old died from "ligature compression of the neck and blunt forced trauma to the head."
Now a control room leader, supervisor and two call handlers have been served with notices by the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC).
The investigation will look at potential gross misconduct, after it was said they dealt with phone calls from Mrs Birch just days before her death.
Calls from Mrs Birch ranged from November 2 to November 7.
Investigations were started after "it became apparent Kent Police had been in contact with Mrs Birch since September."
IPCC Commissioner Mary Cunneen said: "My thoughts and sympathies are with Mrs Birch’s family at what must be a desperately sad and difficult time for them.
Couple Anne and Lee Birch at the opening of the Westgate micropub. Picture: Wayne McCabe
Anne Birch was discovered dead at home. Picture: Wayne McCabe
"IPCC investigators have made contact with Mrs Birch’s family and I have offered to meet with them to answer any questions they have.
"Our investigation is at an early stage but I would like to assure Mrs Birch’s family we are carrying out a robust and independent investigation into Kent Police’s contact with Anne-Marie."
Mrs Birch's husband Lee Birch, 55, has been charged with her murder and remanded in custody.
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