Police officer who hit child driving 'below standards'

Trevenson Street
Image caption The collision happened in Trevenson Street in Camborne

A police officer, whose vehicle collided with a girl leaving her with serious head injuries, was driving "below standards set out in force policy," an inquiry has found.

The officer was responding to a "violent incident" in Camborne, west Cornwall when he hit the 12-year-old.

A police watchdog investigation found the officer had a case to answer for misconduct.

That decision was not upheld by Devon and Cornwall Police though.

The police watchdog, the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC), said in its report the officer was on his way to an immediate response domestic violence case when the collision occurred on a 30mph road at about 08:00 GMT on 6 January 2016.

'Incredibly upsetting'

Evidence showed the car's blue flashing lights had been illuminated but the sidelights, siren and headlights were not on.

Because of the time of day, the use of sidelights was obligatory but there was no legal obligation for the car's headlamps to be on as the street lights were on.

The IPCC said the police officer had a case to answer for misconduct for failing to drive at a speed that permitted him to stop safely, contrary to the force's policy on driving police vehicles in an emergency.

Devon and Cornwall Police agreed the officer's driving had fallen below the level of performance required and proposed he would receive management action.

Ongoing medical treatment

In a statement, the force said: "We are pleased to hear the girl who was injured, who cannot be named due to her age, has made a good recovery.

"This incident was incredibly upsetting for everyone involved including the officer driving the police car.

"He has been dealt with accordingly and lessons have been learned as a result."

The girl, who lives in Camborne, has since made a significant recovery but is still receiving medical treatment for her injuries.

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