Controversy deepens over police chief's case

THE controversy surrounding the leadership of North Yorkshire Police took another turn last night after it emerged that disciplinary findings against the force's deputy chief constable were more serious than first reported.

The Independent Police Complaints Commission has revealed that two counts of misconduct, rather than one, had been upheld against Adam Briggs over allegations he unfairly helped a family member during a recruitment exercise.

It emerged that the second case upheld at a disciplinary hearing last week was for "discreditable conduct" – a finding Mr Briggs last night said he did not accept.

After the hearing, Mr Briggs had said only one of six allegations against him was upheld – that of failing to intervene in the actions of chief constable Grahame Maxwell, who faces a charge of gross misconduct over similar allegations in the New Year.

The case revolves around a chaotic recruitment campaign for new police constables which led to phone lines crashing when 350,000 calls were made to the force in a week in February this year.

Yesterday, the IPCC said it wanted to clarify the outcome of Mr Briggs' hearing and that as well as failing "to challenge and report improper conduct," Mr Briggs "acted in a manner likely to bring discredit upon and undermine public confidence in the police service – discreditable conduct".

The sanction of "management advice" was confirmed, along with confirmation that four counts of misconduct, including matters relating to "honesty and integrity", were not upheld.

Mr Briggs responded by issuing his own statement which said he was pleased the IPCC had confirmed he was "cleared of the most serious allegations."

But referring to the IPCC's earlier statement, he added: "I am very surprised to hear the suggestion that a second aspect, one of discreditable conduct, was also upheld at the hearing. If this is the case, I do not accept this finding and I will consider an appeal."