A FATHER given £4,000 by Essex Police after they failed to properly investigate the death of his son has spoken of his hunt for “justice”.

Trevor Philpott, 37, died after taking Subutex and cocaine while at a friend’s house in Mid Colne, Basildon, on Boxing Day, 2010.

An acquaintance – identified in court papers as Terry Poole – was accused of supplying the drug to Philpott and not charged, but Essex Police admitted they failed to mount a thorough investigation.

Mr Philpott’s family launched legal action under the Human Rights Act and have been given an out-of-court settlement Mr Philpott’s father, Graham Philpott, 63, said: “For us it is not about the money. It is about getting justice.

“We wanted it brought into the public domain that Essex Police did an injustice to our son and just treated him like a number.”

On December 26, 2010, police were called to Mid Colne after Trevor Philpott’s friends said that he had fallen asleep on the sofa and stopped breathing.

Police recorded Philpott had taken a series of drugs, including Subutex – a substance given to drug addicts to wean them off heroin.

Officers had been told the name of the drug, but failed to grasp possession is illegal without prescription.

The post-mortem the week after recorded his death was caused by taking Subutex and cocaine, as well as heart disease.

One of Trevor’s acquaintances, Terry Poole, was arrested twice on suspicion of supplying a controlled drug.

But prosecutors said there was not enough evidence to charge him.

The inquest recorded an open verdict in May 2011.

Graham Philpott, from Northfleet, in Gravesend, complained about the investigation.

After an inquiry, Essex Police apologised to the Philpott family for missing opportunities to carry out a proper investigation.

Graham Philpott said: “It was my daughter, Hayley, who badgered us to pursue this. We were just devastated.

“It has been difficult to come to terms with Trevor’s death. The police failings have made it difficult for us to get closure. There were so many ‘what ifs’.

“We just do not want any other family to have to go through this.

“Essex Police did not cause my son’s death, but they did not investigate it properly and that has caused distress for my family.”