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Police commissioner calls for better vetting after chief constable dismissed

Nick Adderley, of Northamptonshire Police, was dismissed without notice on Friday (Jacob King/PA)
Nick Adderley, of Northamptonshire Police, was dismissed without notice on Friday (Jacob King/PA)

The police, fire and crime commissioner for Northamptonshire says she does not “understand at all” how discrepancies in Nick Adderley’s CV were not picked up when he applied for the top job.

Mr Adderley was dismissed without notice on Friday after a misconduct hearing panel found he had breached standards of honesty and integrity and discreditable conduct for lying about his rank, length of service and achievements in the Royal Navy.

Mr Adderley made a number of untrue claims in his CV and his application form when applying for the chief constable role at Northamptonshire in 2018 – including that he had been a “commended” officer in the Royal Navy, had served for 10 years, had been a military negotiator in Haiti and had attended the prestigious Britannia Royal Naval College for four years.

Misconduct panel chairman Callum Cowx raised concerns that none of the incorrect dates were picked up during the vetting procedure, saying “alarm bells should have rung” for those who were scrutinising his application.

Danielle Stone, police, fire and crime commissioner for Northamptonshire since May this year, said it was clear that proper process and proper vetting was not in place when he was hired.

When asked how Mr Adderley managed to slip through the net, she said: “That’s the question, isn’t it? How, indeed?

“I don’t understand it at all. I’d love to know what was behind it all but I don’t think we ever will.

“What I do know is that going forward, we will have really robust processes and procedures and I’m going to be talking to the next Home Secretary about that, because I don’t think things should be left to local organisations to sort out.

“It is a national issue and we need a competency framework and we need really good vetting procedures.”

Ms Stone said people were on “super alert” for bad practice in the police nationally after a string of high-profile incidents.

She said: “I think people are beginning to really understand that when we talk about equality, diversity and inclusion, we mean it, and we want people of integrity in our forces and people with high moral standards.

“The thing I’m really pleased about at the moment with our present leadership is that there are people in place with a lot of emotional intelligence, and for me that’s absolutely key.”