UK cops disciplined, sacked, quit over Facebook misdeeds
Plods boasted of thumping rioters, harassed exes
English and Welsh police are no more sensible than anyone else when it comes to being web2.0sluts, according to reports. Some 150 officers from forces south of the Scottish border have been disciplined for their antics on Facebook in the past four years, at least two were sacked, and a further seven are known to have resigned over online foolishnesses.
The figures and background data were released to the Press Association newswire following a preplanned festive-season Freedom of Information Act request. The agency says that officers' misdeeds included boasting of having roughed up members of the public during recent protests/riots, attempts to befriend victims of crime, inappropriate comment on "others' wives", and harassment of former partners and colleagues. That perennial Facebook favourite, inappropriate pictures, also led to many bobbies' downfall.
One Hampshire plod was reportedly sacked without notice for posting a racist comment on Facebook and another was booted off his force for abusing a fellow officer and harassing a female colleague. Seven other cops resigned following complaints regarding their online behaviour.
Another 56 cops copped written warnings, with nine of these being final ones. A further 88 cases were deemed serious enough to merit some form of action by the offending plods' superiors, including the no-doubt dreaded "guidance or words of advice". Some 32 of 187 complaints made against officers regarding Facebook use were withdrawn, found to be unsubstantiated or otherwise came to nothing.
For context there are over 141,000 police officers in England and Wales and the figures cover four years. ®
Bad apples everywhere
Yes the difference is that if you send a text to your mate saying that Doncaster airport should be blown up - you are arrested as a terrorist.
Post that you like using your position as a police officer to beat up suspects and you get told not to post about it again.
1. This story isn't about holding police to different standards to the rest of us. Surely if any of us were stupid enough to go on Facebook and boast about unpleasant and/or illegal behaviour in the workplace we would expect to be sanctioned.
2. In general we *should* be holding the police to a higher standard than Joe Public. Just as (in sentencing terms) assaulting or otherwise harming a police office is considered more serious than a similar attack on any other member of the public, police offiers behaving in immoral or illegal ways should be treated more seriously than any other member of the public doing so as the consequences are potentially very serious. An assualt on the police is an attack on basic law and the principles of society, and police officers behaving immorally whilst on duty is just as dangerous.
3. The story included the relevant stats to contextualise the figures, so not sure why you think anyone is condemning "a whole public service".
To put it another rway
We have no problem with our officers truncheoning some poor innocent sod to within an inch of his life, just as long as they don''t mention it in public.
The 1st rule of police brutality is never talk about police brutality, or you're fired.