Most police have not been found guilty of sexual misconduct

8 October 2021
What was claimed

52% of police officers have been found guilty of sexual misconduct while wearing uniform.

Our verdict

This is not true. It comes from confusion over a Byline Times report, which claimed that 42 out of 83 (52%) of Metropolitan Police officers kept their jobs after being found to have committed sexual misconduct.

52% of police have been found guilty of sexual misconduct while wearing uniform in the line of duty.

On BBC Radio Scotland’s Good Morning Scotland programme [starting at 1hr 10mins 45secs], Aisha Gill, Professor of Criminology at the University of Roehampton, said that most police officers had been found guilty of sexual misconduct while wearing uniform.

A reader asked us to look into this claim.

When we contacted Professor Gill, she confirmed that she had meant to use a different statistic: that 52% of police officers who were found to have committed sexual misconduct kept their jobs.

This figure seems to originate with a Byline Times report in September, which claimed, based on public data and Freedom of Information requests, that 43 out of 83 Metropolitan Police officers kept their jobs after being found to have committed sexual misconduct between 2017 and 2020. This is about 52%.

While we’ve not assessed the Byline Times’s statistics, it’s clear they do not refer to the proportion of police officers found to have committed sexual misconduct.

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