Gross misconduct allegations proven against former police sergeant PS Gareth Starr

A misconduct hearing into a former police sergeant has determined that he would have been dismissed had he not resigned.

The public hearing was held on Thursday 26 November 2020 at Police Headquarters using remote technology.

Following an IOPC investigation a panel, led by a legally-qualified independent chair, found that while on duty at Bridgwater Police Station on 17 February 2019, PS Gareth Starr failed to fulfil the responsibilities and duties expected of a custody sergeant, and that his actions amounted to gross misconduct.

These included failing to ensure the safety and wellbeing of a detained person and making derogatory comments towards them.

He will now be barred from serving as a police officer again.

Superintendent Simon Wilstead, head of Professional Standards, said:

“We expect the highest level of professionalism and care from all our staff and the safety of detainees in our care is of paramount importance.

“There is no room in policing for officers who abuse their position, or who take advantage of vulnerable people, who rightly look to us to protect them.

“Although regulations allow an officer to resign while under investigation for gross misconduct, the misconduct process will still continue. The former officer will now be placed on the National College of Policing’s Barred List preventing him from working within policing and other law enforcement bodies.”

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