No criminal charges brought over domestic abuse allegations against police

Police appealing for information after car stolen off driveway in Ipswich. Picture: LUCY TAYLOR

No criminal charges were brought following the allegations - Credit: Lucy Taylor

Suffolk police received 20 allegations of domestic abuse against officers and staff over the past five years, according to Freedom of Information (FoI) statistics. 

The figures revealed that no criminal charges were brought against police officers or staff in any of the reports. 

Only one report resulted in a member of staff receiving a written warning following a misconduct meeting in 2017/18, the figures showed.   

The statistics come after an investigation revealed Suffolk and Norfolk police have the worst record of officers found guilty of sexual misconduct remaining in their jobs.

Suffolk police said each allegation was investigated in line with policy, and that many cases result in no further action due to evidential difficulties or the victim not supporting prosecution. 

The force said it remained "committed to providing domestic abuse victims with the best possible service". 

A spokesman for Suffolk police said: “Where an officer is suspected of committing a criminal offence, the case is determined using the normal criminal justice processes.

"Following conviction or caution of a police officer, the matter of sanction in respect of the officers employment is considered by the chief constable.

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"Any decision is based upon legality and proportionality having due regard to all the circumstances of the case.

“We remain committed to providing domestic abuse victims with the best possible service regardless of whether they wish to see a case proceed to court.

"There are a range of protective measures that we and our partners can put in place and we would implore anyone who has or is suffering from domestic abuse to come and speak with us. Talking to somebody is the first step.”

It was revealed that 70% of police officers found guilty of sexual misconduct in Suffolk and Norfolk Constabularies remained in their jobs.

This compared to 52% of police officers in the Metropolitan Police.

Responding to that investigation in a joint statement, Suffolk and Norfolk police said the forces had "robust processes" in place to deal with allegations and complaints. 

They added that both forces were "relatively small" in terms of officer numbers, which means that "the percentage of sexual misconduct cases where officers are found guilty and remain in their role may seem high but the overall numbers per year are very low compared to larger forces".