Belfast Telegraph

Friday 19 September 2014

Pc sacked over 999 calls misconduct

A Metropolitan Police officer has been sacked after he mishandled a number of 999 calls

A police officer has been sacked after he mishandled a number of 999 calls, including reports of rape, domestic abuse and a suicide threat.

An investigation by the police watchdog found that out of around 3,000 emergency calls handled in a three-month period in 2009, 141 had "significant performance issues" and 19 amounted to gross misconduct.

The 58-year-old Met Pc, who was based at Bow Central Command Centre in east London, was fired following a misconduct hearing.

The IPCC investigation began in August 2009 after a woman dialled 999 to report a domestic assault. She ended the call in frustration after experiencing difficulties with the officer understanding the correct spelling of her surname. The officer closed the call log and failed to respond to the report.

The woman later explained what happened to a family friend, who also worked at the command centre, leading to the launch of the inquiry.

It was discovered that the officer, who has not been named, failed to respond properly to reports of domestic abuse, rape, potential armed break-ins, a suicide threat and a road traffic collision.

The misconduct panel was also informed that in seven of these cases he altered the last digit of the caller's telephone number by one digit when he logged the details. In his interview statement the Pc explained that he had done this to avoid conflict with his supervisors.

The investigation covered the period from May 1 2009 - when he began handling 999 calls from the public - to July 26 2009 when he was placed on restricted duties.

The report found that out of the 19 cases of gross misconduct, nine callers had phoned back or visited a police station, six were offered assistance by the inquiry team, and four callers could not be contacted.

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