Lincolnshire Police has responded to data that shows 17 accusations of sexual misconduct made against its male officers and staff in the last four years, saying it takes all allegations “extremely seriously”.
The figures obtained by RADAR via a Freedom of Information request, show that between 2016 and 2020, there were a total of 17 sexual misconduct allegations against Lincolnshire Police officers.
All 17 reported cases were against male officers, though just one was convicted of common assault and dismissed from his duties, as the others found themselves with no case to answer.
Humberside Police, which covers North and North East Lincolnshire, had eight allegations against officers in that time period, though the gender of these officers was not disclosed.
The FOI request looked at figures from a total of 31 police forces across the UK, which revealed that over 750 accusations were made between 2016 and 2020.
The responses to the request did not clarify whether the officers were on duty at the time of the alleged incidents.
Lincolnshire Police has said that it takes “all allegations of sexual assault” extremely seriously.
A spokesperson for the force told The Lincolnite: “Whenever a complaint of a sexual offence is received it is referred to the Independent Office for Police Conduct.
“The allegations are investigated robustly and where there is evidence to do so, the case will be presented to the Crown Prosecution Service and referred to a gross misconduct hearing.
“These figures show that in one case an officer was convicted of common assault and a gross misconduct hearing concluded that the former officer would have been dismissed had he not resigned.
“He was placed on the Barred List. In all other instances, officers were found to have no case to answer.
“The public’s trust and confidence in policing is vital, and our processes are there to ensure that we treat these reports with the utmost seriousness.”
Humberside Police said it expects the “highest standards” from its workforce and stated that one allegation of sexual harassment by an officer is too many.
Assistant Chief Constable Chris Noble said: “Where allegations are made against any officer or staff member, we will take all necessary steps to ensure a full investigation.
“One allegation of sexual harassment by an officer or member of staff against anyone is one too many and we would ensure a full and proper investigation is carried out to obtain the facts of the allegations.
“I would reiterate the words of Chief Constable Lee Freeman in saying, ‘Misogyny & VaWG (Violence against Women and Girls) exists in society and in policing – we are not in a vacuum. Things must change across the whole CJS (Criminal Justice System), but we must hear what is being said re policing & do more’.”
ACC Noble added: “I will stand by any one of our officers or staff members who after investigation have been found to be innocent however I will stand with the rest of the police community and nation in upholding the law against those who are found to have committed any offence, be that of a sexual nature or otherwise.”
Home Secretary Priti Patel announced an independent inquiry into systematic police failures following the death of Sarah Everard at the hands of then-serving Metropolitan Police officer Wayne Couzens.
Everard was kidnapped, raped and murdered by Couzens during her walk home in Clapham, London on March 3.
Former police officer Couzens admitted the charges against him in July, and was sentenced to life in prison without parole on September 30.