North Yorkshire police boss resigns amid criticism over Sarah Everard comments

North Yorkshire's Police and Crime Commissioner has resigned amid national outcry over comments he made about Sarah Everard's death.

Philip Allott said he has done the "honourable thing" by stepping down to "restore confidence in the office".

This comes after the North Yorkshire Police, Fire and Crime Panel unanimously passed a vote of no confidence in Mr Allott - with panel members directly calling on him to resign.

In an interview with BBC Radio York, Mr Allott said that Ms Everard should never have "submitted" to the fake arrest by Wayne Couzens that led to her kidnap, rape and murder.

He also said women needed to be more "streetwise."

Mr Allott has since apologised and retracted the comments but initially refused to resign.

On Wednesday 13 October, the majority of Philip Allott's staff signed a letter saying they have no confidence in him and that his comments on the Sarah Everard case have brought his office into "disrepute."

His office has received 900 letters of complaints about the comments which he made in a BBC interview earlier this month.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson also criticised Allott in response to a question from ITV News Tyne Tees but did not echo calls for him to resign.

On Thursday 14 October, he appeared at a North Yorkshire Police and Crime Panel meeting where some of the complaints from members of the public were read out.

One said they were "ashamed" by Philip Allot's response to Sarah Everard's murder.

Philip Allott addressed the meeting and reiterated his apology for his comments.

He said he gave a "car crash of an answer" in the BBC radio interview and that his comments were "wrong, entirely misconceived, grossly insensitive."

He said he was asked about what women can do to protect themselves in the light of Sarah Everard's murder.

"With hindsight, I should have queried the fundamental basis of the question" he said.

In his resignation letter, Mr Allott said:

"Following this morning’s meeting of the Police and Crime Panel it seems clear to me that the task will be exceptionally difficult, if it is possible at all.  It would take a long time and a lot of resources of my office and the many groups who do excellent work supporting victims.

"This is time victims do not have. There are women and girls in York and North Yorkshire today suffering at the hands of men. Victims and the groups who support them need to be heard. They cannot be heard if the airwaves are filled with discussion about my future.

The Bishop of Ripon, Rt Rev Dr Helen-Ann Hartley, welcomes the news but says it should not have taken Mr Allott so long to reach the decision.

The North Yorkshire Police, Fire and Crime Panel will now arrange the appointment of an acting Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner until a by-election can take place.

Speaking on behalf of the panel, chair Cllr Carl Les said:

 “The views of the panel members were made extremely clear today and the vote of no confidence in the commissioner, following his remarks about the tragic murder of Sarah Everard, was unanimous.

“It is our job to provide oversight for this extremely important role and, while we did not have the power to remove the Commissioner, we believed there was a lack of trust and confidence in him that made his position untenable and he should go.

“We welcome the fact that the views of the panel have been taken on board and that Mr Allott has listened to the public and the vast majority of his staff.

“We will convene a special meeting of the panel to appoint an interim Police, Fire & Crime Commissioner for North Yorkshire, while arrangements are put in place for the election of a new Commissioner at the appropriate time.