A police officer, PC Lochlan Bashford, 23, stationed at Brighton Police Station, has been dismissed from duty after a disciplinary hearing found him guilty of acting inappropriately towards his female colleagues. The hearing, held at Sussex Police headquarters, was overseen by a panel led by an Independent Legally Qualified Chair (LQC), who ensures transparency and proportionality during misconduct hearings.
Over the course of three days, starting from November 13, the hearing heard evidence that PC Bashford had engaged in sexualised behaviour and made inappropriate comments towards his female colleagues on multiple occasions, both while on duty and outside of work. During the investigation, PC Bashford was assigned to restricted duties.
The panel determined that PC Bashford’s actions violated the standards of professional behaviour concerning Authority, Respect and Courtesy, and Discreditable Conduct, constituting gross misconduct. As a result, he was dismissed from his position without notice and will be added to the College of Policing Barred list, preventing him from returning to the police force.
Detective Superintendent Jon Robeson, deputy head of the force’s Professional Standards Department, emphasised the force’s commitment to maintaining high standards of personal and professional conduct among officers and staff. He stated that any allegations of behaviour that fail to meet these standards are thoroughly investigated in accordance with the Police Conduct Regulations. Additionally, all complaints and misconduct related to sexual behaviour undergo a comprehensive review process to ensure proportional investigation.
Robeson further highlighted the force’s dedication to cultural change, aiming to challenge, report, and address unethical or unprofessional behaviour. Creating an environment where colleagues feel confident in reporting such behaviour is essential to ensuring a workplace free from criminal behaviour, misconduct, and misogyny.
“The actions of this officer in this case fell far short of the standards we expect,” Robeson concluded, reflecting the panel’s findings.