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Police officer sacked after sending racist and homophobic messages via WhatsApp

PC David Alston was dismissed without notice from Essex Police

2019-04-17

A police officer has been sacked after sending racist and homophobic messages to friends via WhatsApp.

PC David Alston – who was based at Braintree – reportedly sent the offensive texts and video clips of extreme pornography to his friends in a WhatsApp group back in 2017.

Alston was caught when police began investigating into a member of the group and was subsequently suspended by Essex Police, according to the BBC.

A spokesperson for Essex Police said: “The messages came to light during a domestic abuse-related investigation involving another member of the same WhatsApp group.”

Following a misconduct hearing at Chelmsford Civic Centre, Alston was found to have breached police standards of profession behaviour and was ruled he should be dismissed without notice.

Deputy Superintendent Dean Chapple said: “Racism and homophobia is absolutely disgusting and has no place in our society, let alone within the police force.

"PC Alston was a highly respected and capable officer however his conduct, whilst off duty and in the presence of selected friends who were not associated with policing, fell way below the standards we expect of our officers and in no way represents our values."

The Minority Ethnic Support Association chair, PCSO Macdonald Neife, added: "We are not aware of any systemic racist or negative cultural behaviour, but would encourage any colleagues who are aware of unacceptable behaviour to report this through the channels available."