Defiant Cressida Dick vows not to quit claiming the Met is better than before

10 February 2022, 12:28 | Updated: 10 February 2022, 14:07

Dame Cressida Dick has insisted she won't walk despite a string of controversies
Dame Cressida Dick has insisted she won't walk despite a string of controversies. Picture: LBC/Alamy

By Will Taylor

A defiant Cressida Dick has insisted she has "absolutely no intention" of quitting her job as the Met's top cop - despite a string of criticism of her tenure.

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She was tight lipped as she was asked about her plan for improving London's police force by LBC's correspondent Matthew Thompson.

The commissioner refused to reply when asked if she lost the confidence of the Mayor of London.

She was put "on notice" by Sadiq Khan after her force was embroiled in yet another round of controversy.

It emerged most officers caught up in the racism and misogyny scandal at Charing Cross police station are still employed.

Read more: Rape threats and Auschwitz jokes shame of Met cops revealed by watchdog

Read more: Cressida Dick given 'days and weeks' to clean up Met racism and misogyny or she's out

But despite calls for her to quit, Dame Cressida said she will plough on as commissioner and that the force is actually improved.

"I have absolutely no intention of going and I believe that I am and have been, actually for the last five years, leading a real transformation in the Met," she said on Thursday.

"We have a service now which is, I'm absolutely certain, more professional, fairer, more transparent, more accountable and closer to its communities and more effective in, for example, reducing violent crime, which has been going down year on year on year in almost every category, bucking the national trends."

Her force has come under fire after the Independent Office for Police Conduct [IOPC], a police watchdog, uncovered a culture of racist abuse and jokes about rape and the Holocaust between some officers at Charing Cross police station in central London.

Read more: Met police apologise to woman nine years after 'sexist and dehumanising' strip search

Read more: 'Can you help us?': Mock police signs call for overhaul of Met after leaked messages

The IOPC said these "incidents are not isolated or simply the behaviour of a few bad apples" and the Met apologised over it.

However, of the 14 investigated, two were dismissed for gross misconduct and put on the barred list, preventing a return to policing, while another two resigned and several others faced disciplinary action, the IOPC said. Nine were still employed.

Dame Cressida has also been attacked for the Met’' initial resistance to investigating "Partygate", the affair that has engulfed Westminster.

As videos, photos and articles relating to alleged breaches of Covid rules during England's various coronavirus restrictions emerged, the Met said it would not look back at older claims.

But it later changed its stance, deciding it will now probe events on eight days between 2020 and 2021, and this week said it will begin contacting some 50 people over it. The fact the force had to U-turn in the first place angered some.

And Dame Cressida is still resented by those caught up in the Sarah Everard vigil controversy. Police broke it up and made arrests as it took place during Covid restrictions.

It was criticised for policing the sombre occasion for the murdered 33-year-old, who was abducted by an officer in the Met's Diplomatic Protection group. There had been concerns about potential "red flags" from his past behaviour that generated questions as to how he was still employed in policing.

Dame Cressida has been warned about her future by Mr Khan, whose spokesperson said earlier in February: "He has put the Commissioner on notice.

"He said the Met needs to urgently show it has an effective plan for restoring the trust and confidence of Londoners in the police and to drive out the culture of racism, homophobia, bullying and misogyny which clearly still exists within its ranks."

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