Officer gets final warning for mocking suspect`s genitalia after `pepper-spray arrest`

An officer who used excessive and disproportionate force during an arrest went on to ridicule the suspect to colleagues, a force disciplinary panel heard.

Sep 25, 2017

An officer who used excessive and disproportionate force during an arrest went on to ridicule the suspect to colleagues, a force disciplinary panel heard. Police Constable David Boddy fired incapacitant spray from close range into the face of the man as he attended his home address, detaining him for criminal damage and threatening his flatmate. The Devon and Cornwall Police officer then made “inappropriate, disrespectful and derogatory” remarks about the semi-naked suspect’s genitalia. PC Boddy faced a charge of gross misconduct when he appeared at a public disciplinary hearing at force`s Middlemoor headquarters in Exeter. After the three-day hearing, the panel found that the Plymouth-based response officer`s conduct during the incident in June last year amounted to a breach of the standards of professional behaviour, namely authority, respect and courtesy, use of force and equality and diversity. PC Boddy, who has been on restricted duties since the allegations were raised, was served with a final written warning after the hearing found the allegations proven. The matter had been previously referred to the Independent Police Complaints Commission which recommended that PC Boddy had a case to answer for gross misconduct. Superintendent Pete Windle, head of Professional Standards Department at Devon and Cornwall Police, said: “The officer’s behaviour in this case directly contradicts the force’s values, the code of ethics and the standards of professional behaviour.” He added: “The public rightly sets high expectations of the police.”

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