Police officer sacked for gross misconduct

A CLEVELAND Police officer has been sacked for gross misconduct after an investigation by the Independent Police Complaints Commission.

The 36-year-old police constable faced a disciplinary hearing where an allegation that he had inappropriately touched a woman was upheld.

It comes just days after the force’s Chief Constable Sean Price was sacked after disciplinary hearing by Cleveland Police Authority found he was guilty of two counts of gross misconduct.

In the latest case the panel concluded the officer had abused his position as a police officer, acted without honesty and integrity and behaved unprofessionally.

The incident happened last year after the woman had been arrested on suspicion of shoplifting in Stockton.

The officer did not deal with the woman correctly as a detainee and touched her inappropriately.

Following the woman’s complaint the matter was referred to the IPCC who managed an investigation by Cleveland Police’s professional standards department.

The investigation found the officer failed to deal with the complainant as a detained person and did not adhere to PACE which clearly defines the process for the arrest and interview of suspects.

He did also not adhere to Home Office guidelines for the recording and non recording of crimes.

The officer admitted he made contact with the woman by giving her a cuddle and this act was deemed wholly inappropriate and in the circumstances was considered an act of gross misconduct.

As a result the officer faced at disciplinary hearing and was dismissed without notice.

IPCC Commissioner Nicholas Long said: “This officer acted in a completely inappropriate way to a woman who was in his custody. His behaviour implied he would assist the woman only if she accepted his sexual advances. Such behaviour is reprehensible and it is correct he has been dismissed.

“The IPCC recently highlighted the issue of officers abusing their power for sexual gratification and, regrettably, this is another example. Such behaviour appears to be used to target those who are vulnerable and it is a fundamental betrayal of trust.”