A Thames Valley Police officer has been found guilty of the battery of a child, following our investigation.
Police Sergeant (PS) Matthew Myers, 49, was given a community order to do 200 hours of unpaid work for assaulting a 16-year-old boy who was in police custody in Banbury, Oxfordshire, on 4 January 2020.
Luton Magistrates’ Court heard yesterday (22 February) that PS Myers struck the child on the face and then removed clothing, leaving him naked until a detention officer came into the cell to assist him.
During our investigation, our investigators reviewed and analysed CCTV from the custody suite and interviewed the detention officers present. An account was also taken from the child and PS Myers prepared a statement under caution, following Covid-19 guidance.
IOPC regional director Graham Beesley said: “PS Myers abused his position as a custody sergeant to assault a child and he has now been convicted of that offence.
“His primary duty is to ensure the safety and welfare of all those who are detained and assaulting a looked-after child who was vulnerable, where English was not his first language, is the exact opposite of what the officer should have been doing.
“The sentence shows that officers are not above the law and this kind of behaviour is not acceptable.”
The matter was voluntarily referred to us on 16 January 2020 and we completed our investigation in May. We sent a file of evidence to the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) in June which authorised charging the officer with battery, contrary to section 39 of the Criminal Justice Act 1988.
A decision on whether he should face disciplinary action is being considered.
Thames Valley Police
- Stats since 1st January 2022
20 Misconduct Hearings
90% held in public
Thames Valley Police covers Buckinghamshire, Berkshire and Oxfordshire.