A police officer has acknowledged allegations of misconduct against him following an investigation that revealed he had assaulted a female colleague.
A misconduct hearing convened at Sussex Police headquarters from Monday, September 18th, to September 20th, with a panel led by an Independent Legally Qualified Chair (LQC).
LQCs are selected from a pool of independent, legally-qualified individuals to oversee police misconduct hearings, and they operate under the governance of Police Conduct Regulations. LQCs collaborate with the Association of Police and Crime Commissioners and other stakeholders to ensure transparency and fairness in misconduct proceedings.
During the hearing, it was revealed that PC Peter Kay, formerly stationed in Crawley, had forcefully grasped and squeezed the arm of his colleague, identified as PC B, during an off-duty argument, resulting in noticeable bruising. PC B’s fellow officers later observed the bruising on her arm and promptly reported it to her supervisor, prompting a criminal investigation and PC Kay’s suspension from duty.
While the criminal investigation did not lead to prosecution, the force’s Professional Standards Department initiated a misconduct inquiry and referred the case to the hearing.
During the hearing, PC Kay acknowledged that he had violated the Standards of Professional Behaviour concerning Discreditable Conduct and Authority, Respect, and Courtesy. The panel found these violations constituted Gross Misconduct. As a result, the officer received an extended final written warning for three years.
Detective Chief Inspector Jon Robeson from the force Professional Standards Department said: “We expect our officers to act with the utmost integrity, and in accordance with the Code of Ethics and the Standards of Professional Behaviour, and we have invested in a comprehensive programme of cultural change towards challenging, reporting and tackling unethical or unprofessional behaviour.
“The actions of this officer in this case fell far short of the standards we expect, which is reflected in the findings by the panel.”