A police misconduct hearing has been scheduled to take place between Monday 26 February 2018 and Friday 2 March 2018 commencing at 10am.
The conduct that is the subject matter of the case, and how that conduct is alleged to amount to gross misconduct, is as follows:-
- Between 3 July and 24 August 2000, an inquest took place into a gentleman’s death in Humberside police custody. On 28 July 2000, the officers were the operations commander and the deputy operations commander on Humberside Police’s surveillance team when surveillance was undertaken on a member of the deceased’s family and her legal representative from about 3.20 pm until about 5.13 pm.
- The deployment of the surveillance team at short notice was sanctioned by the officers and their role included satisfying themselves that surveillance was lawful, proportionate and necessary before instructing the surveillance team on their tasks and permitting any surveillance to take place.
- They also failed to question the purposes of the surveillance and any authorisation (see below) for it in order to satisfy themselves that any authority to conduct the surveillance was lawful, proportionate and necessary.
- As the (deputy) operations commander, and members of the surveillance team, the officers carried out the surveillance on 28 July 2000, without appropriate authorisation and justification. It was intrusive and involved following the family member and her legal representative away from the Court to the Kingston Theatre Hotel and Lowgate car park and attempting to listen to conversations between them. Those conversations are likely to have been (or included matters which were) private, confidential and subject to legal professional privilege.
- Surveillance authority 421/2000, which purportedly authorised “public place surveillance in all areas covered by the Humberside Police boundaries using mobile, foot and technical surveillance, in order to gather evidence of potential offenders to help and assist in the planning of operations to reduce public disorder, identify offenders and co-ordination any police response”, was unlawful, disproportionate and unnecessary and, in any event, did not purport to come into force until 5pm on 28 July 2000.
- Until that point in time, surveillance authority 364/2000 was in force. It only authorised officers “to observe and monitor protesters gathered outside the Hull Crown Court complex at the inquest … . To gather evidence and identify suspects involved offences that may be committed outside the court” [emphasis added].
- Surveillance authority 364/2000 had this objective: “To observe, monitor and identify any suspects or public order scenarios outside the front of the court to enable a low key police presence outside the front. There is not believed to [be] any confidential material … The only intrusion involves the concourse outside the front of the court building” [emphasis added].
- The surveillance which the officers conducted on 28 July 2000 went far beyond the strictly limited terms of surveillance authority 364/2000 with which they were obliged to comply.
- The above conduct is said to constitute breaches of the following Standards of Professional Behaviour:-
(i) Orders and Instructions: Police officers only give and carry out lawful orders and instructions. Police officers abide by police regulations, force policies and lawful orders.
(ii) Duties and Responsibilities: Police officers are diligent in the exercise of their duties and responsibilities.
10. Those breaches of the Standards of Professional Behaviour are so serious as to justify dismissal and therefore constitute gross misconduct.
The proceedings will take place at the Magistrates Court Building, Estcourt Terrace, Goole DN14 5AF. Anyone wishing to attend the hearing should please pre-register by sending their details to the following e-mail address.
The details required from applicants are; name, date of birth, address, email address and contact telephone number.
Available space will limit numbers of the public attending to 10.
A notification will be sent to successful applicants by Thursday 22 February 2018.
Please note we cannot permit filming or recording of the proceedings, and attendees may be searched prior to entry to the hearing. They will also be asked to provide valid photographic identification such as a passport or driving licence.
Please note that the Legally Qualified Chair has imposed the following conditions on attendance, pursuant to Regulation 31(6)(b) of the Police (Conduct) Regulations 2012:-
- The use of film and/or sound recording equipment is prohibited, other than for official use;
- The taking of photographs is prohibited;
- The use of live, text-based communications for the purposes of simultaneous reporting of proceedings is prohibited.
Please note that there are limited parking spaces and refreshments will not be available other than beverages. If you have any access or other requirements, please indicate on your application.
Other restrictions may apply at the discretion of the person chairing or conducting the misconduct hearing.