Northamptonshire PC accused of ‘exceeding driving authority’ and lying to senior officer over 999 response

Constable faces gross misconduct hearing at Force HQ

Thursday, 28th July 2022, 10:57 am

A Northamptonshire Police officer has been accused of disobeying orders and lying to her boss after claims she exceeded her authority to drive vehicles at speed.

Constable Tia Watson faces a hearing into alleged gross misconduct at the force HQ at Wootton Hall Park on Thursday (August 4).

A statement released by Northamptonshire Police claims PC Watson had a ‘basic driving authority’, which did not allow her to drive with blue lights or sirens on, disregard traffic signals or signs or exceed the speed limit.

A hearing on Thursday (August 4) will decide if PC Tia Watson was guilty of gross misconduct

It added: “On November 11, 2021 PC Watson was on duty driving a marked police Skoda Octavia vehicle and she was crewed with another officer.

“At around 18.11 she received a request to attend a grade one response and in so doing she activated the emergency blue lights and contravened a red traffic light, before driving in excess of the applicable speed limit.”

Grade one incidents are the most serious call-outs and require quickest response times.

The statement goes on to claim that PC Watson had her driving authority removed by her senior officer the following day but later told the Sergeant she only used blue lights to compliantly pull over vehicles and she did not use any lights or sirens when responding to incidents.

Thursday’s hearing will decide if PC Watson’s conduct breached standards of professional behaviour in respect of honesty and integrity, orders and instructions, duties and responsibilities and discreditable conduct in respect of her driving and subsequent communication with a Sergeant.

Officers found guilty of gross misconduct can face dismissal without notice.