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28 June 2017: The underlying facts

  1. In D1538’s statement to the Inquiry he wrote that, on 28 June 2017, he was attempting to go to C Wing to meet another detained person who had agreed to provide him with clothes. D1538 wrote that DCO Darren Tomsett told him he was not allowed to go to C Wing and that he needed to change his clothes “because [he] looked gay”.1 D1538 said that Mr Tomsett made the comment in front of other detained people, which caused him to fear how they would react, and that he himself reacted angrily.1 He said that he was mocked by other detained people for days afterwards as a result of what Mr Tomsett said.2 D1538 wrote that he did not feel comfortable in detention and that he believed that staff were hostile towards gay people.3
  2. D1538 told a PSU investigating officer that Mr Tomsett pushed him and put his head down.4 He said that he was told to go to the staff office if he wanted to complain and that, once there, a conversation took place with Mr Tomsett and a manager. He said that Mr Tomsett complained about him to the manager, who did not give D1538 a chance and only listened to Mr Tomsett.5
  3. In his witness statement to the Inquiry, Mr Tomsett said that he did not specifically remember the incident but stated that he would not have told any detained person that they looked gay.6 Mr Tomsett said that he was aware from reviewing documentation that he had given D1538 a verbal warning. He said that D1538 had been verbally abusive and had been attempting to get onto C Wing without authorisation.7 Mr Tomsett denied pushing D1538’s head down.8 He told the Inquiry that he believed D1538 may have fabricated his account because he was angry that Mr Tomsett had not allowed him onto C Wing.9
  4. D1538 complained to the Home Office about Mr Tomsett in October 2017, after having initially issued a complaint in August 2017. Owing to a misallocation of his complaint, the matter was initially investigated by G4S and there was a significant delay in the PSU investigating D1538’s allegations.10 The PSU investigating officer did not interview Mr Tomsett, relying instead on an earlier interview carried out by G4S.11 The PSU reasoned that D1538’s explanation as to why he wanted to access C Wing was doubtful because documentation showed that D1538 had been in possession of clothing on 3 June 2017.12 The investigation concluded that there was no definitive evidence that Mr Tomsett had made homophobic comments.13 It also concluded that, if D1538’s head had been pushed down, this would have constituted a use of force and there was no documentation to record that this had happened.14 A summary of the investigation report was sent to D1538 via Home Office Detention and Escorting Services, rather than directly from the PSU.15


  1. DL0000231_028 para 102[][]
  2. DL0000231_029 para 104[]
  3. DL0000231_029 para 105[]
  4. HOM002627_004[]
  5. HOM002627_002[]
  6. INN000024_054-055 paras 178-179[]
  7. INN000024_054 para 178[]
  8. INN000024_055 para 179[]
  9. Darren Tomsett 7 March 2022 59/24-60/8[]
  10. CJS001360; CJS003348_006 paras 5.1-5.11[]
  11. CJS003348_022 para 7.3.14[]
  12. CJS003348_022 para 7.3.13[]
  13. CJS003348_022 para 7.3.17[]
  14. CJS003348_022 para 7.3.15[]
  15. DL0000060[]