Police Breach Social Media Rules

Research has revealed hundreds of police officers have been investigated for breaching social media guidelines.

Freedom of Information requests made by the Press Association found officers made racist comments online and asked crime victims to become Facebook friends.

Out of 828 cases in England and Wales from 2009 to February this year, 9% ended in resignation, dismissal or retirement.

The College of Policing have said: "There is no place for officers who abuse the trusted place in us by the public."

Greater Manchester Police reported the most investigations, with West Midlands following closely behind.

Chief executive of the College of Policing Alex Marshall said: "People working in policing must always be mindful of the high standards that the public expect from us.

"Our code of ethics, which was launched last month, sets out the standards which everyone in the service should strive to uphold whether at work or away from work, online or offline."

He further explained that most police officers and staff "uphold these high standards" and that social media "can be a really useful way of us talking to the people that we serve."

He added: "There is no place in policing for officers who abuse the trust placed in us by the public.

"Everyone in policing has to remember that if you're not prepared to put it in a local newspaper with your name at the bottom, then don't say it on social media."

The college's code of ethics urges officers to use social media "responsibly and safely".

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