‘Embarrassment to the force’: Sussex Police sergeant and nine constables are fined £200 each after they were caught at a lockdown house party – when their own colleagues were called out to investigate illegal gathering
- Sussex Police officers were called to report of large noisy house party on May 15
- On arrival, they discovered ten off-duty officers were attending the party in Hove
- All were handed on-the-spot £200 fines, sergeant was given reflective practice
- Another officer was given a written warning after the illegal lockdown gathering
- The group were described at the time as an ‘major embarrassment’ for the force
Sussex police fined a sergeant and nine other constables £200 on-the-spot after finding them at an illegal lockdown bash in the Spring, it has been revealed.
The officers were described as a ‘major embarrassment’ to the force.
Police were called after reports of a party with loud music and up to 30 guests at a large house in Hove on May 15, just two days before lockdown restrictions were eased.
When the householder opened the door, officers from Sussex Police found several off-duty colleagues drinking and eating inside the property in contravention of Covid regulations.
The sergeant was given reflective practice, which requires them to think about their actions and how to improve their performance while another officer was given a written warning.
Fixed Penalty Notices for breaching the health protection coronavirus regulations in respect of gatherings indoors were also issued to the ten officers.
Sussex police fined a sergeant and nine other constables £200 on-the-spot after finding them at an illegal lockdown bash in the Spring in Hove, Sussex (pictured, Brighton beach)
Detective Superintendent Rachel Carr said: ‘We have taken Covid-related breaches very seriously and we do not tolerate this kind of behaviour which falls below the standards we expect of our officers and staff.’
At the time of the incident, coronavirus regulations stated people should only mix with their own household or linked households.
In June, a source said: ‘The party was quite a loud affair with music, alcohol and food and lots of guests having a great time.
‘The officers who responded must have got quite a shock when they opened the door only to discover the illegal party was packed with their colleagues who were on a day off.
‘To find that a load of serving police officers are being ‘Covidiots’ is a major embarrassment for the force, especially as they have been handing out these draconian £10,000 fines to Covid rule-breakers.
‘People will be watching to make sure the same penalties are handed out to those found to have broken the rules.’
At the time, a spokeswoman for Sussex Police said: ‘Police officers were called to an address in Hove, following reports of a gathering inside on Saturday, 15 May at 8.46pm.
‘They entered and found a number of off-duty officers present. This incident, in breach of current lockdown restrictions, is being investigated by the force’s professional standards department.’
Chief Superintendent Nick May said Covid breaches were taken very seriously
Chief Superintendent Nick May said: ‘We take Covid-related breaches very seriously and we are actively investigating this matter.
‘The officers involved have not been suspended while the investigation continues.’
Sussex Police handed out several fines for people who held illegal parties during lockdown.
Police cracked down on the organisers of several parties in Sussex between September and November handing out £10,000 fines.
In January, officers broke up a party of more than 100 people at University of Sussex halls of residence and handed out £200 fines.
Also that month, a music producer was handed a £10,000 fine after organising a gathering of about 30 people in Eastbourne.