PC sacked from Hertfordshire Police after sending 'racist and sexist' texts

The messages were sent between 2009 and 2011

By Matthew Smith, Local Democracy Reporting Service
Tuesday, 25th January 2022, 1:22 pm
Updated Tuesday, 25th January 2022, 1:24 pm

A police constable has been sacked after 21 years of service after it was found he had sent “racist, sexist, homophobic and discriminatory” text messages.

PC Chris Thompson has been dismissed without notice from Hertfordshire Constabulary following a misconduct hearing into the messages, which were sent between 2009 and 2011.

The officer was also cited for failing to challenge a racist comment in a message sent to him during the same period.

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Hertfordshire Constabulary said the constable had an “otherwise unblemished” policing record over 21 years of service, and “apologised repeatedly” following the incident.

However, the officer was found to have breached professional standards as, despite the content not being authored by PC Thompson, “a police officer would be expected, on receiving such content, to delete them and certainly not forward them on”.

A hearing took place on January 11, after the officer was accused of breaching the Standards of Professional behaviour, in regards to: Equality and Diversity, Discreditable Conduct, and failure to challenge and report improper conduct.

The police force did not outline the contents of the messages, or any further details about the hearing.

A statement posted on Hertfordshire Constabulary’s website said: “The circumstances were that between 26 December 2009 and 7 October 2011 Thompson sent messages using his personal mobile phone to another person which contained content that was racist, sexist, homophobic and discriminatory.

“The content of the messages was clear and, whilst they may not have been authored by him, a police officer would be expected, on receiving such content, to delete them and certainly not forward them on.

“It was also found that he failed to challenge a racist comment in a message sent to him in the same time period.

“Chris Thompson had an otherwise unblemished policing record over twenty-one years of service and admitted his behaviour, apologised repeatedly and accepted responsibility for his actions.”

The statement concluded Chief Constable Charlie Hall found PC Thompson for gross misconduct and dismissed him without notice.