Police misconduct hearing finds that former inspector would have been dismissed for sexually inappropriate behaviour

A former inspector who was sexually inappropriate to female colleagues would have been dismissed had he not already resigned, a misconduct hearing has found.

A hearing at Chelmsford’s Civic Centre chaired by legally qualified chair Stephen Gowland, heard how Jon McLeod pursued a course of sexual misconduct while employed by Essex Police as an inspector.

The hearing, which began on Monday December 6 and concluded on December 8, was told that McLeod, who resigned from the force in March 2020, behaved inappropriately towards a number of female colleagues by sending them emails and making comments of a sexual nature.

McLeod, who was based at Basildon, also inappropriately touched one female colleague on several separate occasions.

A misconduct hearing found that McLeod breached the standards of professional behaviour in relation to: orders and instructions; duties and responsibilities; discreditable conduct; honesty and integrity; and authority respect and courtesy.

The hearing panel found that, the breaches amounted to gross misconduct and that had McLeod not already resigned, he would have been dismissed.

He will now be added to the College of Policing Barred List.

Assistant Chief Constable Rachel Nolan, Essex Police’s lead for Violence Against Women and Girls said: “We know, due to tragic events nationally, that the trust and confidence of the public in policing has been damaged across the country. We also know that cases such as this – where a police officer falls so far below our high standards and values – do not help us in building back that trust.

“Essex Police are determined to maintain and build the trust and confidence people have in us, not least our communities, those who work for us and women and girls across Essex – we want to be the example.

“This case demonstrates that we have robust disciplinary procedures to deal with those who do not uphold our values or behave unethically, inappropriately and do not treat their colleagues with respect – there will be no shelter for bad behaviour in our force.

“Essex Police is a diverse and inclusive employer and we are committed to ensuring our workplace remains an environment where respect prevails.”

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Mick Ferris

Editor Email: [email protected]