A police officer in one of Britain’s largest police forces made offensive, racist and homophobic comments about Pakistanis while on duty, a tribunal has ruled.
The disciplinary hearing ruled Thames Valley Police officer PC Perry Greenhalf, who was based in Newbury and resigned on Tuesday, committed gross misconduct.
He told a colleague, ‘Pakistan is a dirty, smelly country’ and made homophobic comments about a child.
The panel met at Thames Valley Police headquarters in Kidlington, Oxfordshire, and ruled his misconduct was serious enough to justify dismissal.
But there was no need, because he has quit the police anyway.
Greenhalf, who did not attend the hearing, denied gross misconduct but admitted using some of the language.
He was reported by colleagues after he allegedly made the comments in their company while on duty.
The disciplinary panel took place at Thames Valley Police headquarters in Kidlington, Oxfordshire, and ruled PC Perry Greenhalf’s misconduct was serious enough to justify dismissal (file photo)
He said ‘Pakistan is a dirty, smelly country’ when he attended a residential address over an alleged breach of Covid-19 lockdown restrictions in October 2020.
The disciplinary panel ruled he did say the comments and they were ‘offensive and racist in that they displayed a prejudice towards a particular group’.
But they found it was not proven that he commented ‘the house will smell of curry anyway’.
They ruled he did make a homophobic remark about another colleague’s sexuality when discussing a party they were planning.
And last summer colleagues said he also made remarks about a vulnerable sexually exploited child, including a ‘disgusting’ remark made in a town centre in earshot of the public.
These homophobic remarks were found proven and described as ‘extremely offensive’.
Thames Valley is one of the biggest forces in Britain, covering Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire.
Panel chair Chiew Yin Jones said ‘On the basis of our findings we were satisfied that the former officer by making these offensive, racist and homophobic comments clearly breached the relevant standards of professional behaviour.
‘His conduct would undoubtedly have had adverse impact on public confidence.’
Barrister George Thomas, prosecuting, told the tribunal the officer had made offensive remarks before entering an Asian family’s home, stating that
Pakistan was a ‘smelly and dirty’ place and that the family’s home would be, likewise.
His colleague, PC Michael Rice, told the hearing ‘I reminded Perry about wearing a mask because we want to be setting an example and following the rules.
‘Perry did not particularly buy into the Covid thing and did not care about the restrictions.
‘He said ‘the house will smell of curry anyway…Pakistan is a dirty, smelly country.’
‘The fact that he was making a comment like that so early on in our working relationship caused me some concern.’
PC Greenhalf told a colleague, ‘Pakistan is a dirty, smelly country’ and made homophobic comments about a child (file photo)
Mr Thomas said ‘That comment relates to the unpleasant persecution of the Pakistani community in the 1970s and 1980s and this language enables that historical persecution of that community to continue within some sections of the British community.
‘This was not misconduct but gross misconduct.
‘It is a fundamental value in modern policing that you reflect the community that you serve.
‘That is an essential element of the service that a police officer provides to the community.’
The tribunal heard that PC Greenhalf used homophobic slurs to describe a teenage boy, identified only as P, who was well known to police in the area.
Mr Thomas revealed that P had been the victim of child sexual exploitation and had often gone missing.
But when discussing the teenager PC Greenhalf made ‘bigoted, sexualised comments’ to his colleague, PC Laura Greaves.
She told the hearing ‘There was absolutely no need for that. I have met P a number of times because he has been a missing person and he has mental health issues.
‘PC Greenhalf came across like he never really wanted to be a police officer and he came across like he could say and do whatever he liked and he did not care.’
Mr Thomas said ‘The homophobic language in relation to P is particularly serious. P was a minor who had been identified as being at risk of child sexual exploitation.
‘The homophobic language used raises very serious concerns about whether Greenhalf could be trusted to take his policing duties in relation to P seriously.
‘It would seriously undermine the public trust and confidence in Thames Valley Police’s commitment to protecting homosexual teenagers from sexual exploitation.’
Another witness, PC Adey-Butt, told the hearing ‘I’m proud to wear this uniform and it makes me angry that someone else who gets to wear this uniform could say a thing like that’ (file photo)
The tribunal heard that this was not the only homophobic slur Greenhalf had made while on patrol in public.
Another witness, PC Adey-Butt, told the hearing ‘I’m proud to wear this uniform and it makes me angry that someone else who gets to wear this uniform could say a thing like that.’
The hearing was told that Greenhalf also aimed homophobic slurs at his own colleagues.
Mr Thomas concluded ‘It is our position that all the allegations are proven and, taken together, amount to gross misconduct.’
The tribunal convicted Greenhalf of all the allegations of homophobic comments he made.
However, they cleared him of making a racist comment about a Pakistani family’s house smelling of curry.
The panel found, however, that he had called the country ‘smelly and dirty’ and he was convicted of gross misconduct.