Friday, July 31, 2015

British cop fired for smoking cannabis while on duty

A policeman was sacked yesterday after being caught smoking cannabis in his marked patrol car.

PC Kirk Van Niekerk, who had been an officer for West Midlands Police for more than six years, was supposed to be searching for a missing person when he used the drug in the early hours.

He was caught after a colleague noticed a pungent aroma wafting from the car and reported him.

Niekerk was caught when PC Nigel Weston approached his patrol car at 3am on November 19, 2014.

Deputy Chief Constable Dave Thompson told the Birmingham hearing: 'These are important areas that lie at the heart of being a police officer. 'The public expect high standards from police officers.

'The officer has smoked drugs on duty and he has potentially put the public at risk and lied in subsequent interview.  'As a result of this, the decision of the panel is to dismiss him without notice.

'It demonstrates behaviour that falls well below standards and indicate he is a controlled user of cannabis.  'We have found the officer smoked cannabis in his vehicle on November 19, 2014.

'We note that he is sorry. We are not quite aware what he is sorry for.'

Nierkerk, who was based at the Newtown police station in Birmingham, took a drugs test on November 26, 2014.

Miss Dent added: 'The results of the test were ready on December 3 and confirmed traces of cannabis.

'It was more than three times the accepted cut-off for passive smoking.'

Niekerk admitted to professional standards he had taken cannabis in the past and was suspended by West Midlands Police force on December 4 last year.

John Williams, representing Niekerk for the Police Federation, said: 'He had asked me to tell the panel he was sorry. 'He felt that he and his family had been put in the limelight and perhaps in this current time they should not have been.'

Original report here

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