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College of Policing Guidance on Misconduct Outcomes

The College of Policing has published a document, “Guidance on outcomes in police misconduct proceedings”. As stated on their website:

The introduction of the guidance will mean there is increased fairness and proportionality in cases which is important for officers and public confidence in the hearings.

As part of assessing the seriousness in cases, misconduct panels will consider, amongst other things the officer’s record, culpability for the misconduct, the harm caused, aggravating factors and mitigation.

Aggravating factors will include, for example, any misconduct against a vulnerable person, or where discrimination is evident.

While personal mitigation may also be relevant, the guidance reminds chairs that the case law confirms that the protection of the public and the interests of the profession are important.

This guidance is likely to become used in every police misconduct hearing and practitioners should become familiar with it. The relevant webpage of the College of Policing is here and the document can be downloaded here.