The police watchdog launched an "unwarranted attack" on three officers when it claimed they tried to discredit former Conservative chief whip Andrew Mitchell, the West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner said.
Following a detailed investigation, with legal advice, three experienced senior officers from three separate forces, all under the supervision of the Independent Police Complaints Commission, came to the clear conclusion that there were no grounds for disciplinary action in relation to the case involving Andrew Mitchell and representatives of the Police Federation.
Then, IPCC Deputy Chair Deborah Glass – who supervised the investigation throughout and could have taken over the management of this case at any time, yet did not – for some reason decided to issue a press statement giving a different view.
She did not state what elements of the process she had supervised were incorrect, nor on what different facts or legal advice she decided to state her opinion.
Her opinions, I emphasise, are just that – opinions – and have no legal status.
– West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner Bob Jones
Her role should have been to comment as to whether there were any flaws in the process and she has not produced evidence of any such flaws.
Her statement vilifying the officers concerned was gratuitous and in my opinion an abuse of process. I stand fully behind the three Chief Constables and by my two Police and Crime Commissioner colleagues in Warwickshire and West Mercia.
I will be writing to the IPCC asking for an apology for what I consider an unwarranted attack on the integrity of the investigating officers and the senior officers who sat in judgement.