A gross misconduct hearing, which concluded today (Thursday 8 February 2024), found that a former West Mercia Police officer would have been dismissed from the force had he not already resigned.

The hearing upheld allegations that the conduct of former PC Richard Davis, 53, who was based in Herefordshire, breached the Standards of Professional Behaviour as set out in the Police (Conduct) Regulations 2020.

An investigation by the anti-corruption unit (ACU) found that between December 2019 and January 2022, Davis had repeatedly been dishonest in communication with the vetting and ACU teams by knowingly providing false, misleading, or inaccurate verbal and written statements regarding his financial situation.

He had seriously failed to manage his personal finances despite significant support from the force.  

Today’s hearing found that Davis’s actions breached the standards of honesty and integrity, orders and instructions, and discreditable conduct.

Temporary Deputy Chief Constable Richard Cooper said: “Police officers and staff have a duty to disclose details of any financial difficulties to the force, both during initial vetting and throughout their career.  This is essential to protect them from becoming vulnerable to blackmail or corruption, which can obviously have a detrimental impact on the public.

‚ÄúRichard Davis not only failed to follow the correct procedures, despite extensive support from the force, but actively and knowingly provided false information.  This isn‚Äôt acceptable.

“As a force we are realistic and compassionate and know that times are tough for many people at the moment.  Support is readily available for officers who are open and honest about any financial difficulties they may be experiencing.

‚ÄúAs illustrated by today‚Äôs outcome, we will not let individual officers undermine the credibility of the force by acting dishonestly and fraudulently.‚ÄĚ

Richard Davis will now be added to the College of Policing’s Barred List, banning him from working for a UK police service in the future.

The outcome of the hearing is subject to the normal appeals process.