Fedster + 1,307 Posted July 31, 2018 Share Posted July 31, 2018 Nicholas Perry could be dismissed after incognito colleague filmed interaction. A Met Police officer thought he was saving himself hours of paperwork by letting a member of the public off the hook for drug possession - but could now be dismissed as the man was an undercover officer. PC Nicholas Perry, based at the Roads and Transport Policing Command, was carrying out a routine patrol alongside a probationer colleague when he saw a man walking towards him “brazenly” holding two small bags of cannabis in his hands. He told him to hand over the drugs then ground the contents under his boot, in north-west London in October 2016. He did not file any records or carry out name checks and even told the man “Do you want to get arrested?” when the apparent member of the public asked if he was going to be served with paperwork, a misconduct hearing heard. PC Perry accepts his action amounted to misconduct but denies gross misconduct, arguing his behaviour does not justify dismissal. Stephen Morley, representing the force, said PC Perry had been an experienced officer at the time of the incident, with seven-and-a-half years service under his belt. He had been on a routine patrol with PC Ricardo Kuronis, sweeping the area near a bus stop for knives and other weapons. An officer named at the hearing as “Simon”, was on a separate, undercover operation at the time and had just bought two bags of cannabis. “As the three officers walked towards each other as, Simon says 'Alright?' PC Perry says 'Hi, what have you got in your hand'.” Simon insisted he had “just a phone” until PC Perry lost patience, asked him to “hand over the gear”, told him “Off you go” and dropped the cannabis on the floor, Mr Morley said. Mr Morley added: “Simon turns around a bit cheekily and says don’t you give us no paperwork or anything. PC Perry says do you want us to nick you? “He grinds it on the floor with his boot and puts the plastic wrappers in the dustbin.” Because of the sensitive nature of Simon’s work, PC Perry wasn’t given his misconduct notice until June 2017 and was not interviewed until last October. Mr Morley said: “PC Perry was immediately honest about what happened and said he remembered and accepted he’d taken the drugs and destroyed them. He said it was a small amount of cannabis and decided to simply use his discretion to destroy the cannabis and apologised. “He knew in essence he should have done the checks and records. He said he’d let himself and PC Kuronis down and agreed he let the police service down as well. “It was unfortunate it was an undercover officer. It could have been someone who walked away from that incident with a very low view of the police service. “It was topped off with the threat to arrest. We say this was a serious statement.” PC Perry told the misconduct panel although he had no idea Simon was a police officer, he was “99 per cent sure” he was not a drug dealer as he did not fit the demographic and would “have to be out of his mind” to encroach on local drug dealers’ territory. He said he had mistakenly believed he had the right to use his discretion and wanted to save himself two to three hours paperwork, bypass the force’s “bureaucratic system” and prioritise searching the area for weapons instead of dealing with a tiny amount of cannabis. But he also argues his judgement at the time was clouded by work related stress and personal struggles. He claims he had been bullied by a colleague in the 18 months prior to the October 20 incident. He said his concerns about working conditions were “largely ignored and dismissed” and he was eventually referred to occupational health for depression and work related stress. PC Perry recalled that in September that year he had been working in a small team based in the Civic Centre in Harrow and was chatting with other officers and PCSOs about how the day had gone when another officer launched into a verbal attack. “He stood leaning over me as I was sat down and said 'Fuck off you fucking wanker I fucking hate you.' “I requested to move teams. That was ignored. I felt very uncomfortable working with him and I requested many more times to be moved,” he said. PC Perry had a two week residential occupational health internment later that year. His lawyer, Nicholas Yeo told the panel the PC did not have a lenient attitude towards cannabis and had seized £120,000 worth of the drug from a residential property after smelling the drug on his walk to work on the same day as the incident with the undercover officer took place. Mr Yeo said: “From a common sense point of view the decision he [PC Perry] came to was not a bad one having regards to there wasn’t much in the way of drugs [and] the time that would have been spent in dealing with the drugs. “By way of background, in 2004 the Labour government reduced cannabis from Class B to C. In 2009 Gordon Brown put it back to B. Research shows 190,000 [of police] hours were saved by having it as Class C. “It was a rather unusual set of circumstances. Simon deliberately brought himself to the attention of the police, he passed one would think deliberately close to the officer. “This officer has given evidence saying he met his eye. He was the first to speak to him and had the drugs in his hands. “Ordinarily people who don’t want to be arrested wouldn’t be acting in that way.” PC Kuronis was initially investigated alongside by PC Perry but dealt with via management action as it was decided although he should have challenged PC Perry, he was a junior officer and was not the perpetrator. The hearing continues. View On Police Oracle Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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