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Two police constables and a police community support officer have pleaded not guilty to misconduct in the case of a disabled man murdered in Bristol after false claims he was a paedophile.
Bijan Ebrahimi, 44, was beaten to death and his body set on fire by a neighbour, Lee James, in July 2013, after a long campaign of bullying. James was later jailed for life, and another neighbour, Stephen Norley, was imprisoned for four years for assisting an offender.
There was an investigation into police conduct during the events leading up to Mr Ebrahimi's death. Today three PCs and one police community support officer were at Bristol Crown Court on charges of misconduct in a public office, with one of them also charged with intending to pevert the course of justice.
PCs Helen Harris, 40 and Leanne Winter, 37, pleaded not guilty to misconduct, while police community support officer Andrew Passmore, 55, denied the same misconduct charge and also pleaded not guilty to intending to pevert the course of justice. PC Kevin Duffy, 51, did not enter a plea to a single charge of misconduct.
The defendants were granted bail and the case was adjourned for a trial expected to start on November 9th.
Three police officers have appeared in court this morning charged with misconduct in public office following their dealings with murdered Bristol man Bijan Ebrahimi.
A PCSO, also from the Avon & Somerset force, was charged with misconduct and attempting to pervert the course of justice.
PCs Kevin Duffy, Helen Harris and Leanne Winter appeared at Bristol Magistrates Court this morning alongside PCSO Andrew Passmore. They will reappear at Bristol Crown Court on February 12th.
Mr Ebrimi was murdered on a council estate in Brislington in July 2013. He was beaten to death before his body was set alight after wrongly being accused of being a pedophile. The police's handling of the case has been subject to a long investigation by the Independent Police Complaints Commission.
Two civilian police staff could face charges over the treatment of a Bristol man murdered by a vigilante who branded him a paedophile.Read the full story ›
An inquiry by the IPCC into police conduct surrounding the murder of Bijan Ebrahimi has moved a step further, on the first anniversary of his death.
Mr Ebrahimi was beaten to death and then set on fire in Bristol last July, after being wrongly branded a paedophile.
The IPCC has sent a file of evidence to the Crown Prosecution Service, relating to the conduct of three officers and how they dealt with Mr Ebrahimi's repeated calls for help.
The family of a man murdered on his doorstep and set alight after being wrongly branded a paedophile, today thanked the people of Bristol for their support since his death.
A tree was planted in memory of Iranian-born Bijan Ebrahimi at St Brendan's College, close to where he was killed last summer. Both Bristol's Mayor, George Ferguson and Lord Mayol Faruk Choudhury were at the ceremony.
Mr Ebrahimi's sister Manisha Moores said she hoped today was a sign of change in a city where murders like his should never have happened.
An investigation by the Independent Police Complaints Commission into officers' treatment of Mr Ebrahimi continues.