Hampshire Incidents

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Police officer dismissed after behaving aggressively towards a female he met in Winchester nightclub

A police officer has been sacked after committing gross misconduct by violently scratching a woman’s throat with his fingernail and biting her lip as he kissed her.

Pc Liam Richards behaved aggressively, inappropriatly and without consent towards the complainant, referred to as Miss A, who he met in a nightclub in Winchester, Hampshire, a disciplinary hearing was told.

Nick Hawkins, legally qualified chairman, ruled the case against Richards as proven and ordered that he should be dismissed without notice and for him to be added to the College of Policing’s list of barred officers.

Deputy Chief Constable Sam de Reya, of Hampshire police, said: “Let me be clear, the intimidating and aggressive behaviour of Pc Richards has absolutely no place within the police service and no place in Hampshire and Isle of Wight Constabulary.“I would like to thank Miss A for having the courage to report this incident, knowing the individual was a police officer, and for trusting us to complete a thorough investigation and progress the case to a disciplinary hearing, which has resulted in his dismissal from the force.

“Our communities should have confidence that we are dedicated to ensuring the highest professional standards of our staff and officers and that we will confront behaviours that fall short of those expectations.

“Sadly, Pc Richards’ actions have undermined the great work that our officers and staff are doing every day to relentlessly pursue criminals and seek justice.“The overwhelming majority of our officers and staff deliver their policing role with professionalism and integrity at all times, whether they are on or off duty.”

Alan Jenkins, representing Hampshire Constabulary, told the hearing that Richards was “aggressive” towards the complainant when “he bit her lip and forced his tongue into her mouth”.He added: “They kissed again, when he was also aggressive, and he scratched her throat with a fingernail on two occasions.

“She felt intimidated by his behaviour and decided to get away from him and mix with others, although both remained in the Vodka Bar but in different areas within the building.”Mr Jenkins said the complainant suffered an injury to her lip and added: “The appropriate authority suggests that those injuries would not have been caused by ‘normal’ and consensual kissing.”Richards was arrested on the night of the incident but not charged with a crime.