Police found signs of a potential disturbance when they searched Sheku Bayoh’s home, the inquiry into his death has heard.
Detective Constable Robert Finch said officers examined various locations as they tried to piece together the Kirkcaldy pipe fitter’s movements in the hours before his death more than seven years ago.
Mr Bayoh, 31, a father-of-two, died after he was restrained on the ground by six police officers in Kirkcaldy on May 3 2015.
The inquiry is investigating the circumstances of his death and whether race was a factor.
Search for knife and drugs
The probe heard that on the day after the incident, DC Finch was appointed crime scene manager for Mr Bayoh’s home address in Kirkcaldy and the home of one of his friends.
Investigators were looking for any evidence that may have been relevant to the investigation into his death.
The inquiry has previously heard from Mr Bayoh’s friend Zahid Saeed, who said they had taken drugs and fought that night.
Other witnesses have said they saw Mr Bayoh with a knife,.
Laura Thomson, junior counsel to the inquiry, read from the statement DC Finch gave to the inquiry in which he described what kind of things officers might be looking for.
It said: “I wasn’t given specific information about what might be relevant but from memory it was passed that Mr Bayoh had possession of a knife, it was passed that there were potential drugs – there was mention of these purple and white pills that had been flushed down the toilet.
“My understanding was that we were looking for any loci with an obvious knife set with one missing.
“We were looking for any controlled drugs or substance of legal high.
“There was also mention of fights between witnesses and the deceased so we were looking for any evidence of disturbance within these loci.”
Signs of disturbance
Asked what the purpose of the searches was, DC Finch replied: “We were looking for anything that could indicate Mr Bayoh’s movements and going into that morning.”
DC Finch arrived at Mr Bayoh’s home address at around 7.20pm on May 4 and found signs a disturbance may have taken place.
They included fridge magnets on the floor and on the footpath outside, a broken watch strap and a small flat screen television on the floor, which may have been knocked over.
Asked whether there were any other signs of a disturbance, he said: “Not that I recall.”
DC Finch said he also remembered seizing three knives from the kitchen, along with a red-coloured rucksack on top of either a unit or fridge freezer with various tablets inside.
Trainee gas engineer Mr Bayoh was born in Sierra Leone and moved to the UK when he was 12.
He moved to Scotland after living in London for five years.
The inquiry, before Lord Bracadale, continues.