Under-fire Tory crime commissioner in Cleveland is facing criminal probe after allegation of sexual assault ‘carried out in the 1980s’ was reported to police watchdog
A Conservative police and misdaad commissioner is being investigated over an allegation of a historic sexual assault.
Steve Turner is being investigated by the Onafhanklike kantoor vir polisiegedrag (IOPC) watchdog and a force from another part of the country over the alleged sexual offence, which is said to have been carried out in the 1980s.
Mr Turner, who was elected Police and Crime Commissioner for Cleveland in May, was already in the spotlight after he was named in Parliament as having been cautioned some years ago for theft when he worked at a supermarket.
He was given a police caution for theft while he was a supermarket manager in the 1990s – a job he ‘voluntarily’ resigned from. Mr Turner had previously described the incident as a ‘stupid error’ and a ‘minor incident’.
Geen arrestasies is gemaak nie, but Mr Turner is now resisting pressure to resign following the recent revelation, die Spieël berigte.
Steve Turner is being investigated by the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) watchdog and a force from another part of the country over the alleged sexual offence, which is said to have been carried out in the 1980s
Policing Minister, Kit Malthouse (sentrum) in Middlesbrough with Cleveland Police and Crime Commissioner, Steve Turner (reg)
'N Woordvoerder van die IOPC het gesê: ‘Any allegation that a criminal offence may have been committed by a police and crime commissioner (PCC) must be referred by the appropriate authority to the IOPC to determine whether the matter should be investigated.
‘We have now begun a managed investigation following a complaint referral from the Cleveland Police and Crime Panel regarding the alleged conduct of the current PCC prior to taking up the role.
‘This investigation, which follows an allegation of a serious non-recent criminal offence, will be carried out by a force from another area under our direction and control.
‘We have contacted the complainant to make them aware of our involvement.
Mr Turner, who was elected Police and Crime Commissioner for Cleveland in May, was already in the spotlight after he was named in Parliament as having been cautioned some years ago for theft when he worked at a supermarket
‘As this investigation is at a very early stage, it would not be appropriate to comment further.’
Mr Turner’s office said he has no plans to resign or temporarily step down.
A spokesperson for the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner said: ‘We have been made aware that a referral has been made to Cleveland Police and Crime Panel relating to a non-recent allegation against Police and Crime Commissioner Steve Turner.
‘We extend our full co-operation to the panel and the IOPC and we will assist them with any inquiries they need to make.’
Mr Turner’s job is to oversee the workings of the police force and to give victims a voice.
‘PEOPLE CAN MAKE STUPID MISTAKES’: HOW STEVE TURNER RESPONDED AMID REVELATIONS HE WAS CAUTIONED FOR THEFT
Steve Turner admitted accepting a police caution while working at a supermarket in the 1990s.
Mr Turner became the centre of a political row in September after Middlesbrough MP Andy McDonald used Parliamentary privilige to raise concerns about his past, calling on him to resign.
Mr Turner published an open letter amid pressure to stand down from his role.
Dit lees: ‘The last several hours have been amongst the hardest I have faced in my life as public allegations about a very private matter were made about me without any notice on the floor of the House of Commons by Andy McDonald MP.
‘He made the declaration in Parliament when I was attending a civic awards ceremony in Middlesbrough with my family. It was deeply humiliating to sit there and to discover what had been said and to subsequently have to leave and deal with the matter late at night.
‘Last night I issued a response to MP Andy McDonald’s statement in Parliament, specifically that the allegations he made about me were inaccurate. Today I want to take the opportunity to provide further information and clarification.
‘In the late 1990s, I accepted a police caution in relation to an event at a supermarket store where I was employed. I voluntarily tendered my resignation shortly afterwards, and to reiterate I was not ”sacked” from this position.
‘This challenging life lesson is something that has remained private over the years, so as not to impact on my family and friends.
‘I have diligently followed all the relevant rules governing the appointment of PCCs and can confirm that this historic incident is not something which disbarred me from standing (or remaining) as PCC and occurred over 22 jare terug.
'In werklikheid, the insight it provided me on how people can make stupid mistakes informs the way I operate as a PCC. Inderdaad, I invest a significant amount of money in the rehabilitation of people in this area of work as a result of my insight – people make mistakes and I made mine decades ago. Since that time, I continued to forge a successful career in the retail industry and worked hard for many local communities, as a parliamentary employee and now as a PCC.
‘I trust that the people of Teesside place this minor incident which occurred in the last century in its proper context; a stupid error and they support me in getting on with the job to which I was elected in a landslide.
‘My time as PCC is certainly not at an end. I am close to publishing my first Police and Crime Plan, which sets out ten key priorities to improve policing and community safety across Cleveland. My immediate priority is to drive forward our response to serious violence and it’s impact on the lives of young people and their families.’