A former Dorset Police officer has been found guilty of gross misconduct after he was jailed for a fraud offence.

A misconduct hearing was held at Dorset Police Headquarters in Winfrith on Monday 11 April 2022 to consider the allegations against former Police Constable Matthew Littlefair, who was sentenced on Wednesday 3 November 2021 to two years and three months in prison after admitting a charge of fraud by false representation. 

The charge related to former PC Littlefair fraudulently claiming to be unfit for work between October 2017 and July 2020, with his offending uncovered through an investigation by Dorset Police’s Counter Corruption Unit.

Former PC Littlefair resigned from the Force after he had pleaded guilty to the fraud offence at a court hearing on Friday 13 August 2021. Misconduct proceedings were commenced following the conclusion of the court case.

At the misconduct hearing the panel, led by an independent legally qualified chair, concluded that former PC Littlefair’s conduct had amounted to gross misconduct and that had he still been a serving officer, he would have been dismissed from the Force.

The panel found that former PC Littlefair had breached the standards of professional behaviour, namely honesty, integrity and discreditable conduct. 

Assistant Chief Constable Steve Lyne said: “Members of the public quite rightly expect our officers to operate with the highest levels of honesty and integrity and the actions of former PC Littlefair clearly fell well below those standards. 

“It is disappointing to see an officer dishonestly claiming to be unfit for work, claiming his publicly funded salary and undermining the confidence of the public through his actions.

“I hope this case does demonstrates that, through our Counter Corruption Unit and Professional Standards Department, we will take action against officers who act dishonestly and where appropriate they will not only face internal disciplinary proceedings but also criminal prosecution.

“This behaviour is not indicative of the overwhelming majority of our staff and teams out delivering quality policing day to day and there is no place in Dorset Police for this dishonest behaviour.  

“If you have any concerns in respect of any member of the organisation, we encourage you to report them to Dorset Police so they can be thoroughly investigated.”

As a result of the misconduct hearing decision, former PC Littlefair will be placed on the barred list administered by the College of Policing. The barred and advisory lists were introduced as part of the Government’s commitment to improve police integrity. They increase the accountability of those who are dismissed from policing. If an individual is on the barred list, then they must not be employed or appointed into policing.

Anyone can report any concerns to Dorset Police by calling 101 or emailing [email protected].
Alternatively members of the public can contact the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) – details of which can be found via their website www.policeconduct.gov.uk or anonymously via the Crimestoppers charity online at Crimestoppers-uk.org or freephone 0800 555 111.

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