South Yorkshire Police officers investigated over racism allegations

editorial image

Police chiefs have carried out more than 100 investigations into allegations of South Yorkshire officers being racist.

South Yorkshire Police has revealed that between 2005 and 2013 the conduct of 105 officers was examined following complaints of racism from fellow colleagues and members of the public.

Three officers were subject to disciplinary action.

Force records, revealed under The Star’s Your Right to Know campaign, show that in 2011 an officer received a final written warning for a series of incidents.

They show the officer, who has not been named, ‘suggested a colleague was receiving special treatment due to the his/her race/ethnicity’.

The same officer is also alleged to have asked a member of the public, whose dog had bitten somebody, ‘does your dog like curry’.

And records show the officer ‘tried to embarrass an individual by playing an Asian music ringtone’.

The officer is also reported to have told a colleague that if a complaint of racism was made, it would go ‘nowhere’.

In 2009, another officer resigned after appearing to fall asleep during training on hate crime.

Police records state the officer’s attitude was ‘disruptive, sneering and sarcastic’.

The following year another officer resigned following an allegation they had been ‘racially abusive’.

A South Yorkshire Police spokesman said: “The number of complaints relating to allegations of racist behaviour are low across the force but this is an issue we take incredibly seriously.

“Any allegations of discriminatory behaviour are investigated thoroughly and if evidence of misconduct exists that any employee has acted in a discriminatory manner, they would be subject to disciplinary hearing and potentially face dismissal from the service.

“In June the Independent Police Complaints Commission issued guidance about investigating complaints and allegations of discriminatory behaviour.

“We are reviewing our procedures in light of this to ensure our investigations are compliant with the learning found by the IPCC.

“We are always looking to improve our service and it is important to remind the public that if they are unsatisfied or unhappy with how a complaint has been resolved, there is a right of appeal.”