Crime commissioner reveals reasons behind chief constable suspension

Chief Constable Neil Rhodes
Chief Constable Neil Rhodes

The reason behind the suspension of the chief constable of Lincolnshire Police has finally been revealed by the county’s Police and Crime Commissioner.

Alan Hardwick has today announced that temporary Chief Constable Neil Rhodes was removed from duty following allegations he was acting outside his role.

In a statement released to the press, he said: “I received allegations that Mr Rhodes was involved in the pursuit of allegations of racial discrimination, which he knew to be a contrivance. It was claimed this was an attempt to force settlement of another individual’s employment tribunal claim with another force.”

He added that he had hoped the matter would remain private until the end of an independent investigation, but Mr Rhodes has now announced his intention to pursue legal action against the PCC, which has brought it into the public domain.

Mr Hardwick went on to say: “It saddens me even more to report that, during the course of correspondence since the suspension, Mr Rhodes has argued that even if the allegation made against him was true, he did not believe his actions to be wrong.

“I believe anyone in public office must exhibit a strong sense of right and wrong, no-one more so than a police office. It would therefore be truly reprehensible for any chief constable to seek to exert influence on behalf of another chief officer to secure increased payment of public money in compensation rewards and to do so based on an untruth.”

A judicial review into the suspension, which was requested by Mr Rhodes’ solicitors, is due to take place in Manchester tomorrow.

The chief constable was suspended on February 25. An investigation into the claims against him, led by Sir Peter Fahy, chief constable of Greater Manchester Police.