Posted: Tue 11th Dec 2018

Former Cheshire Chief Constable Simon Byrne cleared of misconduct

News and Info from Deeside, Flintshire, North Wales
This article is old - Published: Tuesday, Dec 11th, 2018

Former Cheshire Police Constable Simon Byrne who was suspended over allegations of misconduct has been cleared of misconduct.

Allegations, which included claims of bullying, have been dismissed by an independent panel.

David Keane, police and crime commissioner for Cheshire ordered an independent inquiry back in 2016 over claims surrounding Mr Byrne.

Mr Byrne was suspended in August 2017 for gross misconduct with regards to Authority, Respect and Courtesy and Discreditable Conduct.

The  was referred to an independently chaired gross misconduct hearing.

David Keane published the independent panel’s report today which found no allegations of misconduct or gross misconduct were proved against Mr Byrne.

David Keane,  police and crime commissioner for Cheshire, said:

“I have today published the independent panel’s report in relation to the misconduct proceedings regarding former Chief Constable Byrne.

The independent panel has stated in its report that the allegations against Mr Byrne are not proved and are therefore dismissed.

“Multiple allegations were made against the former chief constable and the North Yorkshire Police investigation identified multiple cases of misconduct to answer. 

When faced with such allegations against the county’s Chief Constable, I believed I had no realistic alternative but to place the matter before an independent panel for determination of the facts.

Any other course would have been against my core values of fairness and openness, and I will not oversee a police service where such allegations aren’t taken seriously.

“This process has been time-consuming and costly due the complexities of the Police (Conduct) Regulations 2012.

“Incidentally, the government, who set the regulations, has announced it is amending the process in which complaints against chief officers are dealt with. This is a sign that it recognises the current process needs changing.

“The panel, in concluding their findings, did identify that chief constables in a case such as this would benefit from formal mentoring and that this type of support may, in future, prevent a similar situation leading to an investigation and misconduct hearing of this nature.

I agree with this recommendation and will encourage the NPCC to take it forward. 

“There will be a number of people who remain significantly affected and will need to be supported. I would ask that their feelings are respected.”

Following the announcement by Mr Keane at Warrington Town Hall Simon Byrne saud:

“I am very pleased to have been totally exonerated of any wrong doing.

In some ways it still feels like upside justice having lost my vocation after 35 years of public service.

It’s been a privilege to serve the residents of cheshire as their CC many of who have expressed their support personally for me.”

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