Priti Patel Launches Investigation Into Cressida Dick's Resignation

Deputy Commissioner Sir Stephen House will temporarily cover as head of the Met until the next commissioner is appointed.
Priti Patel and Cressida Dick
Priti Patel and Cressida Dick
SIMON DAWSON via Getty Images

An official probe into how Cressida Dick was ousted from her role as Britain’s top police officer was announced today.

Home secretary Priti Patel is understood to be unhappy with the way the Mayor of London Sadiq Khan handled the Met Commissioner’s departure.

Patel said the circumstances in which Dick was leaving her role warranted a “closer look” at the legislation which governs the removal of the commissioner.

But a City Hall source hit back, accusing the home secretary of “wasting” taxpayers money and ordering a “politically-motivated inquiry”.

The investigation will be conducted by the former chief inspector of constabulary Sir Tom Winsor.

Patel also announced that Dick will leave her job in April.

The Telegraph recently described negotiations between Dick and Khan as “extremely acrimonious” over the prospect of a gagging clause and the size of her payout.

Dick quit last month after Khan accused her of failing to deal with a culture of misogyny and racism in the country’s biggest force.

She dramatically resigned just hours after saying she had “absolutely no intention” of going.

Their relationship was said to have “broken down” as Khan was “not satisfied” with her proposal to solve problems in the force.

She agreed to stay on in the post until arrangements to appoint her successor had been finalised.

In a written statement to the Commons on Monday, Patel said Deputy Commissioner Sir Stephen House would temporarily cover as head of the force until the next commissioner is appointed.

The process to find a replacement is expected to conclude in the summer.

A spokesperson for the Mayor of London said: “Public trust in the Met Police is at the lowest level on record, following a series of devastating scandals including the murder of Sarah Everard by a serving police officer and the overt racism, sexism, misogyny, homophobia and discrimination exposed at Charing Cross Police Station.

Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan
Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan
Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

“This was some of the backdrop against which the Mayor lost confidence in the ability of the Met Commissioner to lead the deep-rooted cultural change the Met needs and win back the trust and confidence of Londoners needed to effectively police by consent.

“And since then we have had news of the appalling strip search of a menstruating black schoolchild by Met officers where the Child Safeguarding review found that race was a factor and a damning report about the Met’s lax attitude toward tackling corruption.

“The Mayor is clear that the Met’s next leader must demonstrate they understand the depths of the problems faced by the force and have a plan to restore the trust and confidence of Londoners.”


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