Josh Clayton’s mother blames police for ‘three years of torment’

The mother of a barman who died on a private holiday island has filed a complaint against police, claiming they “botched” the investigation into his death.

Josh Clayton disappeared while working on the Isles of Scilly in 2015.

The 23-year-old’s body was found 10 days later but not examined for another 15 days after that.

During the initial search officers clashed with the family and used a “diviner” to try to trace Mr Clayton.

An inquest that concluded on Wednesday ruled his death was an accident.

His mother Tracey Clayton said: “We can’t let it go.”

Mr Clayton, from Taunton, had been working on Tresco for six months when he attended a staff party and vanished in the early hours of 13 September.

Two Devon and Cornwall Police investigations have failed to find out what happened to him.

Documents seen by the BBC show that within hours of Mr Clayton failing to turn up for work, police had categorised him as an “alcohol or substance misuse” missing person.

Tests showed there was no trace of drugs in Mr Clayton’s body and witnesses said though he had been drinking he was anxious to get home as he had to work early.

Mrs Clayton said officers assumed her son was a “drugged-up drunk who had just fallen into the sea”.

“It is bad enough losing your youngest but the thing is, nobody gives a damn,” she said. “Nobody cares enough.”


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