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The Greenwell Room, Wootton Hall, Mereway
The hearing is to be held in public.
Former Officer Peter Halonka of Northamptonshire Police
Standards of professional behavior that have allegedly been breached
- Honesty and integrity
- Orders and instructions
- Duties and responsibilities
Circumstances of Alleged Breaches
PC Halonka attended an incident on June 4, 2020 with other officers where a male was arrested. The male resisted arrest, as a result of which police powers were used to restrain him, and PC Halonka was involved in the restraint of the male.
After the incident involving the restraint PC Halonka reported a displacement of his lower jaw and told colleagues that it was dislocated.
PC Halonka told a Sergeant that he had not been assaulted and this was an aggravation of a pre-existing injury, he told another officer that he had been struck in the face and told his Inspector that the suspect has struck him.
PC Halonka then provided an account to a DC that the suspect had struck him to the left side of his head. When asked to confirm if anything else had made contact with his face, he stated that he could not remember, before stating that it was definitely the suspect’s fist which had struck him.
On July 18, 2020 PC Halonka completed and signed a s.9 Criminal Justice Act declaration containing a statement that the left side of his head had hit a wall. His statement then contained a recollection that he had taken the suspect to the floor in the course of which the left side of his face collided with the shoulder of another officer. The statement omitted any mention of the suspect striking him to the face.
PC Halonka continued in his statement to assert that his jaw was forced open as a result of the melee. He stated that this was either from hitting the wall or from colliding with an officer when bringing the suspect to the floor.
Between November 6 and 14, 2020 PC Halonka was the investigating officer on an occurrence which meant that he had responsibility for completing enquiries, gathering evidence and submitting a summary report for advice from the CPS in relation to the merits of a prosecution. This was part of his period as a student constable when he was working with a tutor constable, and he was allocated a reduced number of investigations as part of his development.
The file in question was ready to be submitted to the CPS on or about the November 6, 2020. PC Halonka was requested to do this as a priority and failed to submit the file.
The officer then misled his tutor constable and his Sergeant by indicating that he had completed the work assigned to him.
The Sergeant pointed out to PC Halonka that the case file had not been prepared, which the officer acknowledged by saying words to the effect ‘well that’s something I will have to get done’.
On November 16, 2020 PC Halonka attended a road traffic collision (‘RTC’) on the Kettering Road, Northampton, in company with his tutor constable. His involvement at the scene of the RTC required him to carry out a number of enquiries, which included verifying via police systems that the parties were licensed and insured appropriately to use vehicles on the highway.
PC Halonka carried out a search and input the wrong VRM for the motorcycle. This produced a search result that indicated ‘no trace’ of the motorcycle.
The tutor constable asked PC Halonka if he had carried out a check on the vehicle and PC Halonka indicated that he had and that it ‘all checked out’, by which he intended the tutor constable to understand that no further checks were required, and the vehicle was insured and had a valid MOT. The tutor constable asked PC Halonka to confirm that insurance was in place in respect of the vehicle, and he confirmed that it was.
The tutor constable then carried out a further check on the vehicle using the search history function on PC Halonka’s mobile device and found that it gave a result of ‘no trace’. He then realised that the incorrect VRM had been input and corrected the search. This showed that the vehicle was registered to a third party and was not showing as insured.
The tutor constable queried with PC Halonka why he had told him that the vehicle had ‘checked out’ when the search he conducted did not provide a result and indicated ‘no trace’. PC Halonka again indicated that he had carried out the check. The tutor constable showed him the results of the accurate search and PC Halonka said words to the effect that ‘I just don’t understand, I couldn’t have, then’.
The tutor constable later spoke to PC Halonka about the check and why he told him a lie. PC Halonka responded that he had panicked because he knew he had lied and therefore persisted with the lie.
Particulars of misconduct
- PC Halonka failed to be open and honest with colleagues stating that he had been struck by the suspect, causing the dislocation to his jaw, when he knew that this statement was untrue.
- PC Halonka failed to be diligent in your duties and/or follow a reasonable instruction by submitting the file for an occurrence to the CPS in a timely fashion.
- PC Halonka failed to be open and honest with his Sergeant in that he told him that he had submitted the file for an occurrence to the CPS when he knew this statement was false or otherwise did not believe it to be true.
- PC Halonka failed to carry out his duties diligently and/or failed to comply with a reasonable instruction when he carried out the PRONTO search incorrectly. When the result of the check was ‘no trace’, he failed to carry out another search with the correct parameters, or otherwise seek assistance with the search from his tutor constable.
- PC Halonka failed to be open and honest with his tutor constable when he stated words to the effect that he had done the search and/or that the vehicle ‘Checked out’, implying that he had done the search and had verified the insurance on the vehicle. He knew this statement to be false and intended to mislead his tutor constable into thinking that he had completed the search.
- Stats since 1st January 2022
14 Misconduct Hearings
86% held in public