Kent Police officer dismissed following gross misconduct hearing over inappropriate relationship

14 Oct 2020 04:13 PM

A Kent Police Detective Sergeant (DS) has been dismissed without notice at a gross misconduct hearing arranged by the force, following our investigation.

DS Jonathan Pearce, aged 45, was investigated following allegations that he had inappropriate contact with a woman, Ms A, in September and October 2019, and failed to take appropriate action when she reported an attempted rape by a third party in October 2019.

It was alleged DS Pearce breached the standards of professional behaviour by:

DS Pearce admitted misconduct in respect of each allegation, but denied his actions constituted gross misconduct.

Our investigation – started in October 2019 and completed in May 2020 – found evidence of a case to answer for gross misconduct for DS Pearce and Kent Police agreed with our findings.

They scheduled a gross misconduct hearing which took place on 12 - 14 October 2020.

The panel overseeing the hearing, including an independent legally qualified chair, found gross misconduct for DS Pearce.

He was dismissed from the force with immediate effect and will be placed on the police barred list.

IOPC Regional Director Graham Beesley yesterday said:

“DS Pearce breached police professional standards of behaviour by inappropriately engaging with a vulnerable woman and failing to take appropriate action or secure evidence when she disclosed someone had attempted to rape her. The woman trusted DS Pearce with this information and he abused this trust.

“Kent Police’s response to our investigation and the panel’s decision shows that such behaviour will not be tolerated.”