Greater Manchester Police officer given written warning after misconduct case was proven

Published: 03 Feb 2022

A Greater Manchester Police (GMP) officer has received a written warning for his use of CS Spray during the arrest of a 13-year-old, following an investigation by the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC).

Our investigation lasted five months and followed the referral by the force of a complaint from the child’s father in August 2020.

The officer faced a misconduct meeting this week, where he was found to have breached the standards of professional behaviour in relation to his use of force.

Our investigation found that two officers in an unmarked police vehicle in the Moss Side area of Manchester reported seeing the boy in a park involved in what they suspected was an exchange of drugs. After seeing the officers, the boy ran off.

After officers caught up with the boy and made two failed attempts to stop and search him, one of the officers ran after him and used CS spray in the child’s face as he turned his head to look back while continuing to run away.

During our investigation, which concluded in December 2020, we obtained witness statements, conducted interviews, viewed body worn video footage and analysed GMP’s policies and procedures. We found the officer had a case to answer for misconduct and the force arranged disciplinary proceedings.

IOPC Regional Director Amanda Rowe said: “We found the force used by the officer in this case was neither reasonable nor proportionate and could have been avoided.

“We found no evidence the boy posed any immediate threat to police or the public and the officer’s conduct during the incident fell short of what would be expected of a serving officer.

“While no serious injury was caused to the child, we know interactions like this with police can have a lasting and damaging impact on public confidence in the police. Police officers are trained to deal with challenging situations and should only deploy CS Spray when it is necessary, proportionate and reasonable.”

  • Greater Manchester Police