Police officers who shared photos of murdered sisters and called them 'dead birds' sacked

24 November 2021, 14:00 | Updated: 24 November 2021, 15:24

Bibaa Henry and Nicole Smallman were found dead in Fryent Country Park in Wembley in June 2020
Bibaa Henry and Nicole Smallman were found dead in Fryent Country Park in Wembley in June 2020. Picture: Alamy

By Daisy Stephens

Two police officers who shared "shameful" photos of the bodies of two murdered sisters, and described them as "dead birds", have been sacked following a tribunal.

Pc Jamie Lewis, 33, and former officer Deniz Jaffer, 47, will be removed from the police for gross misconduct after sharing photos of Bibaa Henry and Nicole Smallman, a tribunal has ruled.

Lewis will be immediately dismissed, and Jaffer would have been dismissed had he not already quit.

The two officers, who were assigned to protect the crime scene after the sisters were found dead in a London park last year, admitted sharing the photos on WhatsApp on November 2.

Read more: Metropolitan Police officers admit sharing photos of murdered sisters' bodies on Whatsapp

Read more: Teenager who murdered sisters in London park in 'pact with demon' jailed for life

Jaffer took four photographs and Lewis took two.

One of the images was sent to a colleague with Lewis' face superimposed onto it.

Jaffer also sent the photos to two members of the public.

They also used a racially derogatory term for Pakistanis in messages about other, unrelated police matters.

Met officers who shared crime scene photos of murdered sisters sacked

The tribunal heard that Lewis sent a picture message of the dead women in a police WhatsApp group shortly before 4am, writing: "Unfortunately I'm sat next to two dead birds with stab wounds."

Jaffer made a similar reference to being "with two dead birds" in a separate WhatsApp group which included members of the public.

Less than an hour later, Lewis sent a superimposed selfie-style photo of himself with the victims visible in the background to Jaffer.

Neither man reported the other's behaviour to bosses.

The hearing was told that Lewis separately "responded with approval" to another officer who stated he was going to be posted to new location which had fewer Asian people in, who he referred to as "P***s".

Read more: MP barred from bringing baby to Commons hits out at 'system built for men'

Read more: UK set for 'prolonged snowfall' this week as several Arctic blasts head for Britain

Lewis, who did not use the term himself, replied: "Exactly."

Jaffer also used the same racially derogatory term in a separate message to the public on another matter.

Pc Tierney said: "They behaved in a manner that discredits the police force and undermines the public confidence in it."

The hearing opened with a minute's silence in memory of the victims and their families.

Jaffer, of Hornchurch, east London, and Lewis, from Colchester in Essex, are due to be sentenced at the Old Bailey on December 6.

Nick Ferrari on Met Police officers sharing photos of murdered sisters

Assistant Commissioner Helen Ball, chairing the accelerated tribunal in west London on Wednesday, said: "This was hurtful, dishonest and unprofessional behaviour of the utmost seriousness.

"I am sorry that our officers behaved in such a hurtful, disrespectful and criminal way.

"Their actions are shameful."

The pair have already been warned they face "lengthy" jail terms when they are sentenced next month for misconduct in a public office.

Neither Lewis nor Jaffer attended the misconduct hearing, and neither disputed the evidence.

Read more: 'Is everything OK?' Starmer swipes at Boris as poll shows lowest ever approval rating

Read more: 'Andrew would be proud': Harper's Law will see criminals who kill police jailed for life

Danyal Hussein, 19, was jailed for 35 years for the murders of Ms Henry and Ms Smallman.

He attacked the sisters as part of a "pact with a demon", after believing that killing women at random would help him win the lottery.

Hussein then dragged their bodies into bushes and left them with their limbs entwined in a deliberate act to defile them in death.

Some 36 hours later, the sisters were found by Ms Smallman's distraught boyfriend after he became concerned when she failed to return home.