Breaking news: Sussex Police officer sacked for ‘contacting prostitutes’ while on duty

Lee Lyons SUS-150912-115259001
Lee Lyons SUS-150912-115259001

A Sussex Police officer has been dismissed from his job after a public hearing into allegations he had contacted prostitutes while on duty, bullied members of staff and given out restricted information to reporters.

There were more than 20 allegations against Lee Lyons, 40, a police inspector based at Hastings who had previously worked at other stations across Sussex.

Mr Lyons’s hearing was heard at the Force headquarters in Lewes today (December 14), the first public hearing for a Sussex Police officer following their introduction nationally earlier this year.

The hearing, chaired by Chief Constable Giles York, was told that Mr Lyons had ‘inappropriate contact’ with prostitutes while on duty and was accused of bullying behaviour while working on a major operation out of force.

The chairman also heard that over a period of around three years Lee Lyons had accessed Force computer systems on numerous occasions using information obtained to pass details, including restricted operational documents, to journalists and a barrister.

The incidents breached the Sussex Police policy on the security and handling of information.

Detective Inspector Nick Wainwright said, “The incidents came to light when very sensitive details of four cases were passed over a matter of a few days to a journalist who then sought clarification of the information.

“As a result of this, Deputy Chief Constable Olivia Pinkney tasked the anti-corruption unit with identifying the source of the leak and a host of other incidents were discovered.

“Some of these took place while Lyons was on duty; others, including the passing on of restricted operational documents, were carried out off duty.

“He was suspended on October 2, 2014. No complaint has been received about the matter from an external party.”

“Sussex Police expects the highest personal and professional standards of anyone who works for us and any allegations of behaviour that do not meet those standards will be rigorously investigated.

“Lyons was passing on information that was operationally sensitive and may well have had an effect on victims or their families or may have had a negative impact on community tension.

“I asked our anti-corruption unit to investigate and Lyons was identified as the potential source. The investigation has been complex, but as soon as he was identified, we immediately suspended him.

“While I am saddened that it has been necessary to take such action at all, I am pleased with the result, which highlights our determination not to allow people like this to taint the name of Sussex Police and the enormous amount of work carried out day-to-day by thousands of hard-working and enormously dedicated police officers and staff.”

Mr Lyons does have the right to appeal against the decision.

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