Two Humberside Police officers are to face gross misconduct hearings following an investigation into the force's surveillance of Janet Alder, the sister of Christopher Alder who died in custody in Hull in 1998.
The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) has ordered the hearings, after it's investigation found evidence of a case to answer for gross misconduct for two detective sergeants. The report, which was completed in January 2015, was referred to the Crown Prosecution Service who concluded earlier this year there was not enough evidence to provide a realistic prospect of conviction against each defendant.
The IPCC investigation followed a referral by the force in August 2013, following a request from the Home Secretary that all police forces check their records for evidence of surveillance relating to the investigation into the 1993 murder of Stephen Lawrence and the subsequent inquiry into his death. Humberside police did not discover any such evidence but their searches revealed evidence of surveillance into Ms Alder and another person.
Humberside Police did not initially share the IPCC’s view that the two officers should face a gross misconduct hearing. But they will now go ahead, after the IPCC Commissioner wrote to Humberside Police to direct them to hold hearings for the officers.
IPCC Commissioner Cindy Butts said:
“The decision to direct a police force to hold disciplinary hearings is not taken lightly. Taking into account the serious and sensitive nature of the allegations and the weight of the evidence presented to me, I felt it was essential for public confidence that the officers concerned account for their actions.”
The dates for the hearings will be confirmed in due course and the IPCC will consider publishing its findings in full, once all proceedings have been concluded.