Misconduct cops let side down, says Avon and Somerset PCC Sue Mountstevens (From This is The West Country)
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Misconduct cops let side down, says Avon and Somerset PCC Sue Mountstevens
POLICE officers found guilty of misconduct at work have let the Avon & Somerset Constabulary down, says crime commissioner Sue Mountstevens.
Figures show 29 officers have been dismissed or have resigned over misconduct complaints since 2009.
Ms Mountstevens said people are right to be alarmed by the findings, adding: “They [the officers] have let local people, and the many dedicated hard-working off-icers and staff of the constabulary, down.
“The conduct of these officers is in the minority and residents can be assured that there are checks on the police.
“I’ll be closely scrutinising how the police respond to misconduct cases.”
One officer resigned after a “serious sexual assault” on a person they got to know while employed by the force, while another was dismissed for telling a colleague to throw things out of a police car and making offensive comments.
Another officer resigned after being found to have falsified entries in his notebook, and a sergeant resigned after “improperly authorising a strip search”.
Dozens more incidents have resulted in written warnings and advice from managers over misconduct, which include refusing to take statements from crime victims, using excessive force and lying to prevent creating a crime report.
There were also incidents where an officer stole petrol from the police station and another was found to be “unfit for work through drink”.
In total, 102 written warnings and four final written warnings were handed out, while “management advice” was listed as an outcome in 29 of the cases.
Ms Mountstevens wants everyone to have the highest confidence in the police, and will set up an independent residents’ panel to look at police complaints and publish their reports.
She said: “I’ve spoken with the chief constable and asked him to look into these procedures more closely, as well as the legal implications surrounding the naming of resigned and dismissed officers who broke the law.”
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