A Cambridgeshire police officer who allegedly gave a dishonest account under oath at an inquest in September 2017 will face a gross misconduct hearing beginning today (March 16).
PC Julian Crimes, based at Huntingdon Police Station, will face an allegation that he breached the standard of professional behaviour in relation to honesty and integrity in connection with evidence he gave during William Stilwell's inquest. He will also face a further allegation that he breached the standard of professional behaviour relating to duties and responsibilities in connection with his actions when William went missing on 16 November 2015.
William, 23, suffered from a complex psychiatric disorder including OCD. On 16 November 2015 he was reported missing from Fulbourn hospital in Cambridgeshire, where he had been detained for treatment under the Mental Health Act. His body was found later that evening by Sussex Police. In September 2017 the inquest jury concluded his death was by suicide.
Our investigation began in July 2018 after a complaint was received from William's parents regarding Cambridgeshire Constabulary's actions on the day William was reported missing from Fulbourn hospital and the evidence PC Crimes gave at the inquest.
We concluded our investigation in June 2019 when we shared a copy of our report and its findings with Cambridgeshire Constabulary. The force agreed with our conclusions and has arranged for an independent disciplinary panel to hear the evidence against PC Crimes.
The report has been shared with William's family.
We consulted with the CPS regarding potential criminal charges against PC Crimes but, following advice, did not submit a file to them for their consideration.
IOPC regional director Sarah Green said:'A meticulous investigation and full analysis of the evidence indicated that PC Crimes has a case to answer for gross misconduct.
'Cambridgeshire Constabulary agreed with our findings and now an independent disciplinary panel will assess the evidence against him.
'I would like to extend my condolences to Mr and Mrs Stilwell and hope our full and independent investigation into the actions of Cambridgeshire Constabulary may bring them some reassurance.'