Lincolnshire Police officer cleared of all misconduct allegations

A Lincolnshire police officer who starred in Channel Five’s Police Interceptors series has been cleared of all allegations of gross misconduct at the first public police hearing of its kind in the county’s history.

The panel consisting of senior members of Lincolnshire Police and an independent member for the Nottinghamshire force decided that accusations against PC James Woolerton did not breach the standards of professional behaviour after the three-day hearing.

As previously reported, accusations against PC Woolerton centred on his alleged excessive use of force during the arrest of Keith Saunders, who was detained following a lengthy high-speed car chase through Lincoln.

He was said to have punched the driver two or three times in the face and nose while placing handcuffs on him, and administering a knee strike to his thigh after he had been pushed over the bonnet of a police vehicle.

PC Woolerton was also brought before the hearing for an alleged homophobic slur against Saunders.

This comment was overheard by PC John Seal, who was at the scene of the incident and works as a response officer for the force.

PC Woolerton had denied any breach of the police code of conduct throughout the hearing at Lincolnshire Police HQ in Nettleham.

He was cleared of all charges on Thursday, June 18.

New Police (Conduct) (Amendment) Regulations introduced by Home Secretary Theresa May in March of this year have opened up police misconduct hearings to the press and public for the first time.

This hearing was the second conducted under the new rules, and the first in which members of the public and media have attended, following a case in Greater Manchester last week.

Read more about the chair’s findings after the three-day hearing was concluded.