Hampshire Police officers found guilty of gross misconduct following hearing

Six Hampshire Police officers have been found guilty of gross misconduct at a disciplinary hearing.

The officers, led by Detective Inspector Tim Ireson, were members of the Serious and Organised Crime Unit based in Basingstoke.

The disciplinary panel heard evidence that the unit had a toxic culture where the officers regularly made sexist, racist and homophobic remarks.

Between March and April 2018 secret recording equipment was set up, bugging the Basingstoke office, following a tip off.

Prosecutors said it captured offensive language and behaviour on a daily basis, also targeting people with disabilities and the one black officer on the team.

Comments were also made over email and WhatsApp messages. Language it is said officers felt comfortable using because no one challenged or reported the behaviour.

Those in charge, DI Tim Ireson and Det Sgt Gregory Wilcox, were accused of failing to lead by example and allowing toxic behaviour to become embedded in the unit.

The others officers involved were Detective Sgt Oliver Lage, former Pc Craig Bannerman, Pc James Oldfield and trainee DC Andrew Ferguson.

All six admitted misconduct, but denied gross misconduct.

They will find out in January if they face sanctions, which could include losing their jobs.

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