Police officers reinstated after unfair dismissal

Our clients were both police officers and were both dismissed in October 2013 as a result of an incident in which they tasered a suspect they’d arrested in the back of a police van. The suspect had been arrested after an officer saw him urinating in an alley in full public view and a confrontation took place.

09 June 2015

Meeting with judge with gavel

However, both officers were reinstated on appeal in June 2014 when the Police Appeals Tribunal concluded that the findings of the misconduct panel had been unreasonable and unfair.

When the Assistant Chief Constable appeared on BBC Radio Merseyside a month later, he was asked what his force had learnt following the sacking of the officers for the taser use.

Instead of correcting the interviewer and saying the officers had been reinstated, he said the incident “demonstrated his force would not tolerate inappropriate use of tasers”.

The officers retired on medical grounds in March 2015 as a consequence of the events and the stress they’ve endured.

In a statement read out in at the Royal Courts, Slater and Gordon, who acted for the officers, said:

“By not correcting the radio interviewer, the Assistant Chief Constable suggested not only that the officers remained sacked from the force, but also that their case was a prime example of conduct which Merseyside Police would not tolerate. These inaccurate statements caused very significant damage, distress and embarrassment to both officers as they felt greatly injured and betrayed by the force. They now understand that the Assistant Chief Constable says he did not intend to convey those statements about them.”

The Chief Constable of Merseyside apologised to the officers and they were awarded £25,000

in compensation.

Related practice areas:

Constructive and unfair dismissal

Disciplinary action explained

Difference between contractual and statutory employment rights

If you have any questions about this case study or would like to speak to an employment lawyer, call us for a free consultation on 0330 041 5869 or contact us online.

All information was correct at the time of publication.

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