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Hearing upholds allegations of gross misconduct by Police Inspector

Late yesterday afternoon (21 September 2016) a police disciplinary panel upheld allegations of misconduct and gross misconduct against Inspector Sarah Sanderson of North Yorkshire Police.

The misconduct hearing was held by North Yorkshire Police in public since. Forces nationwide are now required to hold them public in the interests of transparency and accountability.

Inspector Sanderson joined North Yorkshire Police in 1995 and her service has included postings in the Hambleton, Ryedale and Harrogate districts, as well as HQ positions.

The three day disciplinary hearing was held at North Yorkshire Police’s HQ at Newby Wiske.

After deliberating for several hours, the disciplinary panel, which was led by an independent legally-qualified Chair, upheld allegations that the officer had:

  • Taken a statement from a person she was closely connected with, contrary to good practice.
  • Used the police computer system to access information for personal rather than policing purposes, against Force policy
  • Provided intelligence on a person known to her without disclosing this personal connection, and that this intelligence contained her personal opinion and unsubstantiated information

The panel concluded that Inspector Sanderson should remain in the Force, but be given a final written warning.


Speaking about the hearing and the panel’s decision, Acting Deputy Chief Constable Paul Kennedy said:

Statistics show that North Yorkshire Police is rated highly by the public, but we do not take that for granted.  Where there has been wrong-doing, it is important for that to be subjected to the very highest level of scrutiny, and that is what the panel has done here.

Inspector Sanderson has had a long and, other than this, positive career in the police service, serving the community. We accept and respect the panel’s decision that she should remain in force, with the sanction of a final written warning.


Brad Jackson, Deputy Secretary of North Yorkshire Police Federation,  said:

During the last year, whilst this investigation has been taking place, Inspector Sanderson has faced a very difficult and worrying period in her life. Her career has hung in the balance and her husband has been seriously ill.

It is a testament to her professionalism, and her commitment towards the people of North Yorkshire, that she has been able to remain working and serving the community through such a personally challenging time.

The decision reached by the panel today is a welcomed one. Inspector Sanderson has drawn valuable learning from this process and now looks forward to the rest of her career within North Yorkshire Police, and continuing to serve the residents of North Yorkshire.

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