Policeman sacked for dogging appeals against 'rough justice'
PUBLISHED: 05:41 21 September 2006 | UPDATED: 09:55 24 May 2010
A WESTON policeman is believed to have gone into hiding after being fired from the force for dogging. Father of two, Darren Lumber, was sacked from his role as a community beat officer after allegedly being caught in a sordid sex act
A WESTON policeman is believed to have gone into hiding after being fired from the force for dogging.Father of two, Darren Lumber, was sacked from his role as a community beat officer after allegedly being caught in a sordid sex act.The incident is thought to have taken place in December when 35-year old Lumber was called to reports of dogging taking place in Sand Bay. It is alleged that when he approached the couple, a marine and a local woman, he asked them to move to a quieter location and then asked to join in.Lumber, who was appointed as the full time beat manager in Kewstoke, Wick St Lawrence, Hewish and Puxton in 2004, is believed to have been rumbled when the marine began bragging around town about the incident.The Weston & Somerset Mercury was approached on Thursday (Sept 13) by an anonymous family friend who said: "Darren plans to appeal against the decision. He has gone out of the area for the day today with his wife and two children."Avon & Somerset Police Federation deputy secretary, Alex Duncan, said: "Mr Lumber is very down and depressed as you would imagine. He's dealing with all the issues you face when you are suddenly out of work, like how to pay the bills, and feels that he's had rough justice. He maintains his innocence."Speaking through Mr Duncan, Mr Lumber said: "An allegation was made by a marine and a woman. I've strongly denied this allegation from the start and have the full support of my family and close friends. I can't comment further on the allegation as I'm in the process of an appeal. Please respect my family's privacy during this time."An Avon and Somerset police spokesman confirmed Thursday that after a disciplinary hearing, which finished on Tuesday, an officer was given his marching orders.The police refused to name the officer involved but said an internal inquiry was carried out and he was suspended after a colleague raised concerns about the officer's behaviour.The force's assistant Chief Constable, Steve Mortimore, said: "This officer's behaviour is quite disgraceful. "He breached the force's code of conduct and its values, and more importantly breached the public's confidence and trust in him. "Avon and Somerset Constabulary took immediate steps to deal with this matter as soon as the incident came to light. The case was robustly investigated and brought before a disciplinary hearing. "The public of Avon and Somerset expect, quite rightly, our staff to behave in a manner befitting their position and with the utmost honesty and integrity. "Successful policing relies upon public confidence and mutual respect. On this occasion the officer has failed to maintain this high standard and we apologise for that. "However, his actions do not represent the professionalism of the 5,000 plus police officers and police staff who work for this organisation. The robust action taken by this force shows that we will not tolerate this sort of behaviour."Kewstoke parish councillor Steve Edwards said: "This is a great shame. I never suspected anything. Darren has been round my house and has liaised with the LAT and residents. He was a nice guy and we're shocked and disappointed."A police spokesman has confirmed that no criminal charges will be brought against Mr Lumber.