A HEREFORDSHIRE policeman would have been sacked for being dishonest had he not resigned last month.

Richard Davis, 53, resigned from West Mercia Police last month with his final shift being two days before a misconduct hearing.

Briony Ballard, representing the police force, said that Mr Davis had admitted to allegations that he had ‘seriously failed to manage his finances, despite significant constabulary support’.

She said: “Mr Davis has been repeatedly dishonest in his communication with the vetting unit and anti-corruption unit about the poor state of those financial affairs.”

Mrs Ballard said that Mr Davis accepts the allegations and was a serving officer when he was served notice about the misconduct hearing.

The hearing was told that in October 2016 a former landlord of Mr Davis attended Hereford Police Station to serve an order of possession after being owed rent.

Mrs Ballard said that at the time Mr Davis was on a career break in Qatar.

When questioned the police officer claimed to know nothing about the money owed and agreed to pay all of the order.

While Mr Davis was on a career break a County Court Judgement (CCJ) was ordered against him for car finance arrears.

Mrs Ballard said that on his return from Qatar, Mr Davis had ‘lied’ on his recruitment vetting form and denied that in the last 10 years that he had been subject to a CCJ.

Prior to a second vetting he had been made subject to another CCJ which was shown in an Experian credit report.

During a vetting telephone interview Mr Davis assured fellow officers by telling them had just been accepted for a mortgage for a house in Hereford.

Mrs Ballard said that there was never any evidence of that.

Due to fears of a “worsening financial picture” a third vetting interview was brought forward. A further Experian report in 2021 still showed a CCJ.

During a subsequent vetting formal interview Mr Davis claimed to be unaware of the attachment of earnings order or that bailiffs had visited a family member’s address while he was in Qatar.

“There was very clearly some correspondence which pointed it out to Mr Davis in no uncertain terms,” added Mrs Ballard. “Instead he avoided personal responsibility for his actions.

“His former landlord was well aware that he was a police officer at the time that he was in rent arrears and had to go to the police station to serve notice.

“He has failed at a gross level to manage his finances and has been given opportunities to tell the truth by police officers but continued to lie and deceive.

“One of the most common reasons for corruption in the police is to relieve debt. It’s important police officers are able to manage their finances.

“It’s an important message to other police officers that this behaviour is not acceptable and can end your career.”

Chair of the misconduct panel bench Wendy Evans said that these was not an isolated incident, but ‘multiple discrepancies’ which Mr Davis now accepted was dishonesty.

“He had multiple opportunities when he could have told the truth about the situation,” said Mrs Evans.

“When he was interviewed Mr Davis initially said that he had delegated the financial responsibility to his wife. He subsequently accepted this was not the case. Credit reports show poor financial management.

“Unmanaged debt can put police personnel in a vulnerable position. Police officers have immense power and when they fail to act with integrity this can have a negative impact on public confidence.”

Davis will now be added to the College of Policing’s Barred List, banning him from working for a UK police service in the future.

The outcome of the hearing is subject to an appeals process.