Waltham Forest cop sacked for using racial slur

A misconduct panel today heard he was only “looking for a response” due to the stress of his job
By Local Democracy Reporter Josh Mellor

A stock image of a Met officer (credit: Met)
A stock image of a Met officer (credit: Met)

A Waltham Forest police officer has been sacked for using a racial slur in a Whatsapp message.

PC Harry Chandler, based at the force for Waltham Forest and Newham, sent a WhatsApp message using a slur for Pakistani people on 10th June last year.

After a hearing lasting two days, the Met Police announced he had been sacked without notice on 17th December.

Following the decision, Detective Chief Superintendent Richard Tucker said: “Using language of this nature is utterly unacceptable and will not be tolerated. PC Chandler has rightly been held to account for his actions.”

Kevin Baumber, for PC Chandler, told the misconduct panel yesterday that he had “spoken honestly and openly” about using the word and recognised “what he did was wrong”.

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Baumber added: “He feels shame, humiliation and he will continue to carry that. Due to his stressful job, he was experiencing distressing deaths… and receiving negative responses from the public.

“It was in that moment that he resorts to saying something controversial, the humour being a taboo thing… to a person he knew not to be racist.

“It was not in earnest, not with conviction or seriousness, it was a deliberate joke, he was looking for a response.”

PC Chandler used the slur in a conversation with ex-cop Jamie Lewis, who was jailed last week for “misconduct in public office”.

Jamie Lewis and Deniz Jaffer, both former Waltham Forest officers, shared photos of murdered sisters Bibaa Henry and Nichole Smallman via WhatsApp and described them as “dead birds” in a groupchat of 41 other Met officers called “the A-team”.

At his own misconduct hearing, Lewis admitted misconduct for texting “exactly” in response to the message from Chandler that contained the slur.

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