Updated: Thursday, 9th July 2020 @ 8:21am

Police chief demands investigation after 'lying' allegation made against officer at Barton Moss fracking site

Police chief demands investigation after 'lying' allegation made against officer at Barton Moss fracking site

By Sam Johnson

Assurances about the policing operation at Barton Moss fracking site are being sought by Greater Manchester’s Police and Crime Commissioner Tony Lloyd due to a number of ‘serious allegations’ were made.

Mr Lloyd was responding to accusations made against a GMP officer who it is claimed lied by telling colleagues a man filming the protest had admitted to drinking– despite video footage contradicting that.

Dr Steven peers was arrested in January after refusing a breath test.

Video footage taken of the incident shows the officer accusing Dr Peers of drinking and driving. Dr Peers is shown in the footage to be clearly denying having consumed any alcohol – saying he had only had ‘a cup of tea’.

After Dr Peers’ denial the officer tells colleagues that Dr Peers had ‘admitted to having a drink’.

Commissioner Lloyd said: “There have been a number of incidents referred to the GMP’s professional standards department, where serious allegations have been made about police conduct at Barton Moss.

“There is legitimate public concern over this operation and it is right and proper that allegations of police misconduct are investigated fully and thoroughly.

 “I have – publicly and privately – called on the Chief Constable to provide assurances that the operation at Barton Moss is proportionate."

Dr Peers spoke to MM and described the attitude of police as ‘extremely violent’ and said that he had lodged an official complaint against his arrest which is now being looked into.

Commissioner Lloyd said: “It is a complex situation where police have to balance the legitimate rights of people to lawfully protest with the rights of those who live and work in the local area.”

“Given there are active investigations into the conduct of police, it is difficult for me to say more at this stage, but I expect the outcomes to be made public and if misconduct has occurred, appropriate action to be taken.”

Image courtesy of York Labour, with thanks

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