THE Police and Crime Commissioner for Wiltshire and Swindon, Angus Macpherson, has spoken out after Detective Superintendent Steve Fulcher was given a final written warning after being found guilty of gross misconduct - allowing him to keep his job.

This morning the independent panel delivered the sanction for the two counts of gross misconduct relating to the investigation into Sian O'Callaghan's disappearance and murder in March 2011.

Mr Macpherson said: “The Chief Constable has responsibility for the direction and control of police officers and staff.

“My role as Commissioner is to ensure that the correct processes are followed by the Constabulary.
“In this instance, my office was required to appoint an independent member of the formal conduct panel and, on this occasion, that person came from outside Wiltshire.

“I am satisfied that the correct process and procedures have been followed and, as such, I respect and support the panel’s decision.

“As Commissioner, my role is to reflect the views of the people of Wiltshire and Swindon.

“At any time, and especially now, it is of great importance that the police service retains the public’s trust.

“I know that the public expect police officers to display the highest standards of professional behaviour. Those standards have been clearly set out by the Chief Constable.

“This case has led to much discussion about the Police and Criminal Evidence Act (PACE) and to calls for the law to be reviewed.

“The legislation was brought in during the 1980s to protect the rights of suspects.

“The MP for South Swindon, Robert Buckland, who is an experienced barrister, was asked by the Policing Minister to look at the workings of PACE as a result of this case. I support Mr Buckland’s conclusion that some changes would be helpful.

“Finally, I would like once again to offer my condolences to the families of Sian and Becky for their sad loss.”