Belfast Telegraph

Officers disciplined by PSNI for failing to properly investigate alleged assault

Two police officers have been disciplined by the PSNI for failing to properly investigate an alleged assault on a teenager by a nightclub doorman.

The teenager claimed that he had been punched to the ground by a bouncer at a Belfast city centre club and sustained a broken wrist as he reached out to break his fall.

However, after nobody was prosecuted over the December 2014 incident the teenager lodged a complaint with the Police Ombudsman about the PSNI's investigation.

A probe by the oversight body into his complaint found that the officer appointed to investigate the incident did "effectively nothing" to progress the case.

The investigation by the Police Ombudsman found that the officer failed to follow up on a series of investigative opportunities and did not take a statement from the teenager.

Even after the statement was taken by another officer and sent to him, he failed to act on it.

He also failed to check for CCTV footage of the incident, did not seize video footage recorded by the teenager on his phone, and did not secure medical evidence of the boy's injuries.

In addition the officer failed to follow proper procedure by submitting a criminal injuries compensation form before the conclusion of the police investigation.

The form was rendered inaccurate by a statement he submitted two days later, but he failed to advise the compensation agency that the form was wrong.

An investigator for the Police Ombudsman also found that the officer failed to provide proper updates to the teenager on the progress of the investigation.

He said: "The officer did effectively nothing to progress this case. He seemed to be under the misapprehension that everything should have been done by the PSNI's Case Progression Team (CPT).

"In actual fact, it was his role to provide evidence to the CPT to allow them to progress the investigation after its initial stages."

Another officer within the police Case Progression Team was also disciplined for a delay in reviewing the case, after he mistakenly believed it had been closed as a criminal injuries compensation form had been submitted.

However, the officer was found to have taken adequate steps to review and progress the investigation once he realised his mistake.

Both officers have since been disciplined by the PSNI.


From Belfast Telegraph