Shropshire Star

Trainee police officer who took drugs 'would have been sacked' weeks after joining force

A student police officer who openly told her colleagues that she took illegal drugs has been barred from ever joining the UK service again.

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Lauren Batham, 23, who was a student officer on the Police Now course, had only been studying for a few weeks with West Mercia Police before testing positive for cocaine on April 3 last year.

She resigned from the force on May 15.

West Mercia Police said the drugs test was conducted after intelligence was received by the anti-corruption unit that she openly told fellow student officers that she used illegal drugs.

Now the force on Friday has held an accelerated misconduct hearing. It concluded that Batham would have been dismissed from the force had she not already resigned.

She was found to have breached the standards of professional behaviour in relation to discreditable conduct and fitness for duty/work.

"This officer only had a few weeks with West Mercia Police and would never have had any contact with the public," a spokesperson for the force said.

The accelerated misconduct hearing was chaired by Temporary Chief Constable Alex Murray.

Temporary Chief Constable Murray, said: “I’m glad that we were able to identify this student officer and fire her. Her attitude and actions have no place in our force.

“We will not tolerate illegal activity by any of our officers, whether on or off duty, and as highlighted by this case we won’t hesitate to take action.

“Our officers spend an incredible amount of time tackling illegal drugs and see first-hand the devastation they wreak on our communities, let alone the violence associated with the supply chain. This makes the actions and attitude of Lauren Batham all the more reprehensible.

“Batham will now be added to the College of Policing’s Barred List, barring her from working for a UK police service in the future.”