Student's police crash death probed

An investigation into the death of a foreign student who was hit by a police car is under way as the young man's parents travelled from China to his UK home.

The 24-year-old, who has not been named, died on Thursday after sustaining serious head and back injuries when he was struck by an unmarked police car in Newtown, Birmingham, on Wednesday night. West Midlands Police said he was hit by a black BMW responding to reports of a stolen vehicle.

The collision happened as the student began crossing the road close to Newtown's shopping centre, at around 7pm. The man died in hospital shortly before 1.45pm on Wednesday.

A police spokesman said the force car was being driven by a uniformed officer who has since been suspended from driving police vehicles. The car was not involved in a pursuit at the time of the collision.

The victim was in the UK studying for an MSc in data networks and security at Birmingham City University. He was living with friends in the Newtown area.

Police said his family has been informed and his parents are flying over to the UK, where they will be met by officers from West Midlands Police.

A force spokesman said the man's parents would be driven to Birmingham upon their arrival in the UK, where they would be supported by specially trained family liaison officers, working closely with interpreters and the Chinese Embassy.

The incident has been referred to the Independent Police Complaints Commission.

The West Midlands Police spokesman said the driver "remains active as a police officer" and stressed they had received the training required to drive police vehicles at speed on public roads.

Pro Vice-Chancellor Sally Westney, at Birmingham City University, said: "This has come as a huge shock to the faculty and the university. We would like to express our deepest sympathy and condolences to parents, family and friends."