A force is awaiting a High Court decision over whether it can sack a police sergeant who dragged a woman across the floor in custody before throwing her into a cell.
Wiltshire Police hopes it will not have to reinstate Sgt Mark Andrews, a former soldier, after it took an appeal to judicial review on October 19.
It is trying to overturn a Police Appeals Tribunal (PAT) decision in December 2011 that the officer should be reinstated and awarded back pay.
The force says that despite having his conviction for assaulting Pamela Somerville quashed in 2010, Sgt Andrews’ behaviour still fell “well below the standards expected” of an officer.
CCTV footage showed him dragging Ms Somerville across the floor at Melksham police station and throwing her into a cell in July 2008. She had required stitches for a cut to her face.
In a statement to PoliceOracle.com following the latest legal move, Temporary Chief Superintendent Paul Mills said: “Wiltshire Police sought Judicial Review of the Police Appeals Tribunal decision in 2011, which concluded that Mark Andrews should be reinstated as a police officer within the force.
“The force seeks Judicial Review, to reinstate the findings of an initial independent police misconduct hearing that took place in 2010, that concluded the conduct of Mr Andrews was such that he should be dismissed from Wiltshire Police.
“The justice in this matter has retired to consider the application and the Force will be informed of the outcome in due course.
“Until such time that the Force receives the decision and considers further potential legal avenues of appeal, Mr Andrews will not be reinstated into Wiltshire Police.”
Sgt Andrews’ conviction for assault was quashed – after spending six days in prison – when an appeal judge said he was satisfied the officer did not intend to throw Ms Somerville into the cell.
Ms Sommerville had been arrested for failing to provide a breath sample after being found asleep in her car but charges against her were later dropped.