Wiltshire Police Officer Dismissed For Gross Misconduct

Friday 3rd August 2018:

A Wiltshire Police officer has today been dismissed for gross misconduct.

There were four allegations of gross misconduct against PC Geoff Goodway:

1) Pleading guilty to the common assault of a member of the public - this was dealt with last month (July) by a criminal court. PC Goodway was sentenced to a community order and fined for two counts of common assault. These incidents did not take place while he was on duty. 

2) Sending abusive e-mails from the Wiltshire Police e-mail system to the same member of the public.

3) Sending an explicit image via the Force's e-mail system to a member of staff while on duty.

4) Neglected to deal with the seizure of cash from an investigation as required by Force guidelines.

A special case hearing, chaired by Chief Constable Kier Pritchard, was held at Swindon's Gablecross Police Station today; having heard all the evidence and examined all the relevant documentation the Chief Constable found PC Goodway guilty of gross misconduct on all four allegations resulting in the decision to dismiss him without notice.
He chose not to attend today's hearing.

PC Goodway, aged 43, who has been a police officer since 2009 and was last stationed at Devizes Borough, was suspended from the Force after his arrest for the common assault charges in July 2017.

Following the special hearing today, Chief Constable Kier Pritchard said: “I believe the majority of police officers, staff and volunteers have the best intentions at heart in both their professional and personal lives - delivering the best they can day in day out. The public rightly expect all police officers and staff to operate to the highest standards of professional conduct - equally, our training and culture also demands this to be the case and I fully understand that any slight deterioration in such standards can have a detrimental impact on the highest levels of trust and confidence which we enjoy with our local communities and the wider national public. Whilst today is a disappointing one, I hope the outcome of this hearing provides confidence to the public that when a breach of our standards are appropriately identified or raised directly with us we will be robust but fair in how we consider and deal with any complaint. The Code of Ethics that all officers and staff work within, clearly sets out the behaviour that is expected by all of us whether on or off duty. I fully acknowledge that this period has been very difficult for all parties concerned and I hope that the outcome of today's hearing will provide some satisfactory closure for the victims and all of those involved in this case."

Angus Macpherson, Wiltshire and Swindon’s Police and Crime Commissioner, said: “Wiltshire Police demands the highest standards of behaviour and conduct from all officers, staff and volunteers both while at work and in their daily lives. It is vitally important that those who fall short of these expected standards are disciplined appropriately so that members of the public can have complete confidence that those who enforce the law are being held to account. Clearly in this instance, Mr Goodway dramatically fell short of the standards expected by the Force and the public. I fully support Chief Constable Pritchard’s decision to dismiss with immediate effect after an appropriate investigation into these gross misconduct allegations.”