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Met and Kent police officers will face misconduct hearings over handling of Wayne Couzens flashing reports after missed chances to stop monster cop before he murdered Sarah Everard
An officer from the Met and a second from Kent Police will face misconduct hearings over their handling of indecent exposure reports relating to killer firearms cop Wayne Couzens, the Independent Office for Police Conduct said today.
Couzens yesterday admitted three indecent exposure offences, but police took no action at the time, leaving him free to continue serving in the Met’s elite Parliamentary and Diplomatic Protection Command.
In the most striking missed opportunity, the 50-year-old exposed himself in front of staff at a McDonald’s restaurant just three days before he kidnapped, raped and murdered Sarah Everard in March 2021.
The Met was provided with the number plate of the car Couzens had driven since 2015 and details from his bank card – but the forced failed to investigate properly and he remained in his role as an elite armed officer.
The IOPC told the Met to begin gross misconduct proceedings against a police constable who investigated the McDonald’s case.
Separately, Kent Police will begun misconduct hearings for a sergeant who allegedly failed to properly investigate reports that a man – later identified as Couzens – had been seen driving with no trousers on in 2015.
Couzens admitted to three counts of indecent exposure
The Met PC will face claims he failed to properly investigate the evidence identifying Couzens as the driver who flashed staff at McDonald’s before providing a dishonest account to IOPC inspectors.
Meanwhile, the Kent Police sergeant is accused of failing to follow all lines of inquiry before closing their investigation into the report of a man driving naked.
The IOPC said Couzens was never spoken to and it had ‘found no evidence’ that he investigators realised he was a police officer.
IOPC Regional Director Sal Naseem said: ‘We have been unable to publish our findings until now due to the risk of prejudicing criminal proceedings against Couzens.
‘Now that those have concluded it will be for the Metropolitan and Kent police forces to organise disciplinary proceedings which will consider the evidence we have gathered and determine whether the allegations against the officers are proven or not.’
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