Force sacks firearms officer who drank wine on duty

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Former police officer Daniel Johnson also held a party during lockdown [Merseyside Police]

A firearms officer who drank alcohol at a pub while on duty has been sacked by his police force.

A misconduct hearing found former PC Daniel Johnson also sent racist and homophobic messages, and held a birthday party during a coronavirus lockdown.

Merseyside Police suspended Johnson after a colleague spotted him drinking wine during a pub lunch while on shift.

The 44-year-old also stole property from the force’s premises.

'Gross misconduct'

Johnson, who denied the allegations, faces being banned from becoming a police officer anywhere in the UK after an investigation by his force's professional standards department.

He was dismissed without notice and will be added to the College of Policing ‘s Barred List for a minimum of five years.

A hearing ruled the PC was "not fit to execute his duties" and his actions had amounted to gross misconduct.

The hearing also found Johnson had sent homophobic messages about two senior officers to a colleague, as well as a racist image to a colleague.

Det Ch Supt Cheryl Rhodes, head of Merseyside Police’s professional standards, said Johnson had fallen "far short" of acceptable standards and his behaviour "completely flew in the face" of efforts, including by the emergency services, to deal with Covid.

"That he worked for a police service tasked with enforcing the very legislation he breached makes his actions all the more disappointing," she said.

“In drinking alcohol while on duty - when he could have been called into action as a firearms officer - he compromised his ability to perform his role.

"And the theft of saw blades and rip saws deprived the force of equipment that might have been used for a policing purpose."

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