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Top cop on blast as shock claim emerges

POLICE PRESSER
NSW Police Commissioner Karen Webb faces a fresh allegation after cancelling a radio interview. Picture: NCA NewsWire / Nikki Short

Breakfast radio host Ben Fordham has put NSW Police Commissioner Karen Webb on blast after she cancelled a scheduled interview on his show.

Ms Webb has been at the centre of public scrutiny for the last month after a series of public blunders.

“Morale in the police force is tanking, and the commissioner has gone into hiding,” Fordham said on his Monday morning show.

Fordham claimed that Ms Webb had approached media executives asking for “favourable coverage”.

POLICE PRESSER
NSW Police Commissioner Karen Webb has been accused of reaching out to media executives for favourable coverage. Picture: NCA NewsWire / Nikki Short

“The NSW Police Commissioner has approached media bosses at Nine Radio and NewsCorp. I know this because one of the conversations was about me,” Fordham said.

Fordham referred to the death of 95-year-old Clare Nowland, who was allegedly tasered by Senior Constable Kristian White at a Cooma aged care home in May 2023.

“When I was asking questions about the lack of transparency over the Taser incident, the commissioner complained to my boss,” Fordham said.

“It was clear to me what was going on, Karen Webb wanted me to ease up a bit.”

Ms Webb was due to appear on Fordham’s 2GB show on Monday to answer questions over the “crime wave” in regional NSW.

HESTON JUDGMENT
She cancelled an interview with 2GB radio presenter Ben Fordham. Picture: NCA NewsWire / Gaye Gerard

She was reportedly busy every day last week but locked in a live interview to start the week.

“But the commissioner is not coming on our show this morning, (she) called me on Friday to explain this,” Fordham said.

He said she was not happy about a “cheeky” question he asked Premier Chris Minns earlier that day inquiring about whether he had received her “letter of resignation”.

“It’s a dummy spit and it’s another example of the commissioner taking things personally instead of looking for the lesson,” he said.

The month of scrutiny kicked off after serving police officer Beau Lamarre-Condon was charged with the double murder of Sydney couple Jesse Baird and Luke Davies.

Police allege he used a service weapon to kill the couple, prompting concerns over the force’s weapon handling protocols and leadership.

Ms Webb was noticeably silent in the days that followed Mr Lamarre-Condon being charged, and when she did finally face the cameras, she was slammed for a series of embarrassing blunders, including referring to the incident as a “crime of passion” and quoting Taylor Swift lyrics when asked if she should resign.

The head of the police force has also faced criticism after sacking a staffer from her public affairs department in recent weeks.

NSW Police has been contacted for comment.