CPS to investigate decision to prosecute Caroline Flack

·2-min read
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - 2019/04/30: Caroline Flack at the JW Marriott Grosvenor House - 90th anniversary party at the JW Marriott Grosvenor House, Park Lane. (Photo by Keith Mayhew/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)
Caroline Flack was awaiting trial for assault when she died. (Getty Images)

The Crown Prosecution Service is to examine its decision to prosecute Caroline Flack for assault, following accusations of a “show trial”.

Flack died by suicide on 15 February while awaiting trial on charges of assaulting her boyfriend Lewis Burton.

The Love Island presenter had been bailed after an initial court hearing and would have been due to appear for the start of her trial on 4 March. She learned of the CPS’s decision to pursue the charges the day before her death.

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LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 23: Love Island presenter Caroline Flack leaves Highbury Corner Magistrates Court on December 23, 2019 in London, England. The Love Island host attended court after being charged with assault by beating following an argument with boyfriend Lewis Burton. (Photo by Hollie Adams/Getty Images)
Caroline Flack was on bail charged with assaulting her boyfriend Lewis Burton when she died. (Getty Images)

After her death, Flack’s management team criticised the CPS for conducting a “show trial”, and Burton has said he did not support a prosecution.

In response to a freedom of information request by the Daily Mirror, the CPS announced there would “be a post-case review panel conducted by a deputy chief crown prosecutor”.

A spokesperson added: “The review will look at the general CPS handling of the case and, obviously, the decisions behind charging is part of that.”

The findings of the investigation are unlikely to be made public.

A CPS spokesperson told the Evening Standard that post-case debriefings are “not uncommon” and that the service does not comment on the outcomes.

Following her death Flack’s family released an Instagram post she wrote before she died, but never published.

She wrote: “I have always taken responsibility for what happened that night,” but insisted: “I am NOT a domestic abuser. We had an argument and an accident happened.”

Caroline Flack and Lewis Burton at the opening of Cahoots Ticket Hall and Control Room in Soho, London. NOVEMBER 6th 2019 REF: WBD 193969 Credit: Matrix/MediaPunch /IPX
Caroline Flack and Lewis Burton in 2019. (AP)

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Opening up about her battles with mental health, she said: “I've been having some sort of emotional breakdown for a very long time.”

Burton released an emotional statement following Flack’s death.

He wrote: “My heart is broken we had something so special. I am so lost for words I am in so much pain I miss you so much I know you felt safe with me you always said I don’t think about anything else when I am with you and I was not allowed to be there this time.”

For confidential emotional support at times of distress, contact The Samaritans at any time by calling 116 123 or emailing jo@samaritans.org.