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Police suspend borough commander

A police borough commander has been suspended over claims of "inappropriate behaviour".

Chief Superintendent Darren Williams, who heads Merton borough in south west London, was suspended yesterday after complaints were made by colleagues.

A Scotland Yard spokesman said: " We can confirm that the borough commander of Merton Borough has been suspended from duty on January 7 2014 following the receipt of complaints relating to his conduct.

"This conduct is now under investigation by the directorate of professional standards. The matters were raised by MPS (Metropolitan Police Service) employees, and relate to inappropriate behaviour. We are not prepared to say anything that may confirm the identity of the complainants.

"Superintendent David Palmer will act as the borough commander for Merton whilst this investigation is concluded, to ensure that there is no impact on our service to the local community.

"The MPS expects all officers and staff to maintain the highest standards of conduct. Where they fall short of this standard we will take the most appropriate action."

According to the Metropolitan Police website, Mr Williams has been based in Merton since February 2012 and has served with the force for 26 years.

A former soldier, he previously led the Met's pan-London crime squad and specialised in hate crime and public protection.

He has overseen a challenging year in Merton, with the death of Pc Andrew Duncan who was run down and killed in September when he tried to stop speeding driver Gary Bromige, also known as Gary Cody.

Local officers were also involved in dealing with record crowds coming to watch the Wimbledon tennis championships, won by Andy Murray.

London Assembly member Richard Tracey, who represents Merton and Wandsworth, said: " It's a great shock I have to say. In my view and the councillors' and the MPs' he's a tremendously successful borough commander.

"He does require high standards but he is a very cheerful chap, he's very precise and very careful. He is a really popular top cop in Merton.

"I can't speak highly enough of him. It's a real shock."

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