Chief police complaints watchdog, Michael Lockwood STOP £190,000 a year role amid criminal investigation into ‘sexual nature’ allegation 40 years ago
- Michael Lockwood, 63, director general of the Independent Office for Police Conduct, has resigned following an investigation into a landmark allegation
- Sources say the accusation, from when he was in his twenties, is of a sexual nature
- Interior Secretary Suella Braverman said she accepted his resignation
Michael Lockwood (pictured), 63, Director General of the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC), has resigned with immediate effect following an investigation
The man charged with investigating police misconduct has suddenly resigned – following a police investigation into a historic allegation, which sources have told The Mail on Sunday is of a sexual nature.
Michael Lockwood, 63, director general of the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC), has resigned with immediate effect following the investigation.
It relates to behavior from when he was in his 20s and living in Humberside, sources say.
Last night Home Secretary Suella Braverman said she had accepted his resignation from the £190,000 a year post, adding: ‘I took immediate action when I was made aware that Mr Lockwood was the subject of a police investigation into a historic accusation, and instructed my officials to ask him to resign or he will be suspended immediately.”
In a statement posted on the IOPC website on Friday evening, Mr Lockwood said: ‘It is with great sadness that I have decided to step down as Director General of the IOPC for personal and domestic reasons, and this will take effect today.”
The watchdog investigates serious allegations of misconduct or criminal offenses by officers and plays an important role in holding police forces accountable.
It is often involved in sensitive investigations into allegations against serving officers in England and Wales, and its remit may include interviewing victims of sex crimes and other vulnerable people.
Mr Lockwood’s departure comes after several years of constant scrutiny on the watchdog. After he took office in January 2018, the IOPC acquitted all police officers referred to him for alleged misconduct during Operation Midland.
Home Secretary Suella Braverman (pictured) said she has accepted his £190,000-a-year resignation
Critics called the fact that no one was held accountable for investigating false historical allegations of child abuse against high-profile figures as a “money wash.”
Mr Lockwood, a former accountant, vehemently defended the IOPC’s investigation and made clear his opposition to reopening the investigation into the police handling of baseless allegations made by fantasist Carl ‘Nick’ Beech.
Following the investigation, the watchdog was labeled ‘unfit for purpose’ by Baroness Lawrence, Lady Brittan and five others whose lives were impacted by failed Scotland Yard operations. In a letter to the prime minister, they called for the IOPC to be led by a “credible and legally trained person.”
The IOPC was also in the spotlight after suing police for sexual misconduct following the rape and murder of Sarah Everard by Met officer Wayne Couzens. Mr Lockwood called for vetting recruits to be ‘more insistent and diligent’ to get rid of ‘bad guys’.
The watchdog was labeled ‘unfit for purpose’ by Baroness Lawrence (right), Lady Brittan (left) and five others whose lives were impacted by failed Scotland Yard operations
After Ms Everard’s murder last year, he said officers falling below expected standards of behavior were not ‘one-off events’ and could not be dismissed as a ‘bad apple’. tough action to address it by leaders.”
The IOPC was established in January 2018 following the closure of its scandal-ridden predecessor, the Independent Police Complaints Commission. Since becoming director general, Lockwood has led investigations into “systemic racism” within the police force, the 17 officers who handled the investigation into the murder of four young men by Stephen Port, and Boris Johnson’s relationship with the American businesswoman Jennifer Arcuri when he was employed. Mayor of London.
The IOPC declined to comment last night on why he stepped down.