Police CCTV at Ballymena death scene 'not working'
Published 23/04/2010 | 00:01
A police station security camera above a stream where a homeless alcoholic man drowned shortly after leaving the premises was not working, a coroner's court heard.
The inquest into the death of 43-year-old Joseph Grant outside Ballymena PSNI station also heard the only reason the Newry man was in the north Antrim town was due to an error in a police computer system.
The body of the father of three was discovered floating face down in the storm drain two days after he left the building in November 2008.
A former PSNI official who then had responsibility for the station estate told coroner Joanne Donnelly that the closest CCTV camera to the incident was not functioning due to a wiring problem.
But she said she could not be certain whether the lens would have spotted Mr Grant if it had been functioning.
"I honestly don't know if the camera had been working what height it was recording at and whether he would have been visible," she said.
Mr Grant had attended the station with a bail form he had received after appearing at Newry Magistrates' Court that morning charged with shoplifting.
Ms Donnelly heard that a glitch in the PSNI's IT system had resulted in him being wrongly sent to an address in Ballymena that had been mistakenly recorded as a bail hostel.