IPCC launches witness appeal after Caister crash

THE Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) has launched an appeal for witnesses to a police pursuit which ended in the death of a teenager after the car he was travelling in hit a wall in Caister.

Two weeks ago, the Mercury reported on 15-year-old Ryan Youngman, who died just after midnight on Wednesday, February 2.

Police officers in a marked vehicle on the Caister bypass and Yarmouth Road roundabout became aware of a silver Ford Fiesta.

They began following the car and, after briefly losing it, began a pursuit. The pursuit continued on to Yarmouth Road, where the Fiesta hit a brick wall.

Ryan, of Middleton Road, Gorleston, the front seat passenger, died at the scene.

Three other people in the car, which had been reported stolen two days earlier, were taken to hospital.

Since then, investigators have completed house-to-house inquiries in the area as well as retrieving some of the CCTV that covers the route of the pursuit. The information from the police car’s black box has also been downloaded and will be analysed.

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In a statement, Ryan’s family said: “To those who knew him, Ryan was a cheeky, lovable, normal teenager. His friends and girlfriend meant so much to him, as did his family.”

Meanwhile, on Saturday an estimated one hundred people gathered to pay their respects at a vigil held in memory of the teenager.

Patricia Page is a borough councillor for the Magdalen ward and attended the service, which began at around 7.30pm and was held at the recreation ground on Church Lane.

Of the strong turnout, many of whom were his peers, she said: “It was good to see and just proved to me the way that the youngsters can come together.

“I think there must have been nearly 100 people there, and it was their way of coping with what had happened. His mum gave a speech thanking everyone for being there and talked a bit about Ryan – it was like a send off for him.”

Chinese lanterns were also let off during the vigil.

l IPCC investigators are keen to hear from anyone who witnessed any part of the pursuit or the collision in Yarmouth Road. They can be called on 0800 0969071 or e-mailed via Caister@ipcc.gsi.gov.uk