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Police Officers Investigated For Exchanging ‘Grossly Offensive Material’ With Wayne Couzens

by : Emily Brown on : 01 Oct 2021 08:29
Police Officers Investigated For Exchanging 'Grossly Offensive Material' With Wayne Couzens@CourtNewsUK/Twitter/Alamy

Numerous serving police officers are under investigation for allegedly exchanging ‘grossly offensive material’ with Wayne Couzens, who is responsible for the murder of Sarah Everard. 

Couzens, who worked for the Metropolitan Police at the time of Everard’s death, was sentenced yesterday to life in prison for his crimes.

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It has now been reported that prior to the rape and murder of Everard, Couzens was part of a WhatsApp group along with five other officers in which he exchanged misogynistic, racist and homophobic material.

Whatsapp (Pexels)Pexels

The group is said to have included three other officers from the Met Police, according to The Times, as well as one officer from Norfolk constabulary and another from the civil nuclear constabulary, where Couzens previously worked.

The ‘vile’ messages were reportedly found on Couzens’ phone following his arrest, and are said to have been exchanged between March and October 2019.

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As a result of the discovery, the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) said yesterday that the five officers are under investigation for gross misconduct. The messages, which were also shared with a former Met officer, were described as being of a ‘discriminatory and/or inappropriate nature’.

Police officer with handcuffs (Pixabay)Pixabay

Two of the Met officers and the former officer are being criminally investigated for sending grossly offensive material, while the IOPC is also carrying out other inquiries into officers who allegedly made jokes regarding violence against women and inappropriately shared information connected to Couzens’ prosecution.

According to Sir Tom Winsor, Her Majesty’s chief inspector of constabulary, Couzens had been known as ‘the rapist’ by some officers, and warned of a ‘culture of colleague protection’ within the police.

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If you have been affected by any of the issues in this article and wish to speak to someone in confidence, contact the Rape Crisis England and Wales helpline on 0808 802 9999 between 12pm–2.30pm and 7pm– 9.30pm every day. Alternatively, you can contact Victim Support free on 08 08 16 89 111 available 24/7, every day of the year, including Christmas

Male Survivors Partnership is available to support adult male survivors of sexual abuse and rape. You can contact the organisation on their website or on their free helpline 0808 800 5005, open 9am–5pm Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays; 8am–8pm Tuesdays and Thursdays; 10am–2pm Saturdays.

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Emily Brown

Emily Brown first began delivering important news stories aged just 13, when she launched her career with a paper round. She graduated with a BA Hons in English Language in the Media from Lancaster University and went on to contribute to The Sunday Times Travel Magazine and Student Problems before becoming Senior Journalist at UNILAD, where she works on breaking news, trending stories and longer form features.

Topics: News, Metropolitan Police, Police, Sarah Everard, UK, Wayne Couzens

Credits

The Times
  1. The Times

    Sarah Everard murder: Killer and police shared abusive messages