Reality TV cop faces misconduct hearing over alleged homophobic abuse

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A policeman who appeared on a reality show has faced a misconduct hearing, over allegations of homophobic abuse and excessive force.

Lincoln PC James Woolerton appeared on the Channel 5 show Police Interceptors, which focuses on officers who deal with high-speed chases and intercept fugitives.

The officer is accused of making a homophobic remark while pinning down Keith Saunders, 26 – as well as allegedly kneeing him twice.

The misconduct hearing was also told that during the incident in July last year, PC Woolerton allegedly leaned over the suspect and made a homophobic remark.

According to the Lincolnshire Echo, police chased Mr Saunders on July 6, travelling above 100 miles per hour as he tried to evade capture.

However, he was eventually stopped, while PC Woolerton and other officers restrained him.

PC John Seal told the hearing that his colleague made a homophobic comment while apprehending Mr Saunders, according to the newspaper.

He said: “The officer leaned over him and made a comment and shortly afterwards made two knee strikes to Mr Saunders’ leg.

“When I initially heard the comment I felt quite alarmed that he had said that. It was almost as if it was to provoke Mr Saunders.

“Mr Saunders appeared fairly calm at that point. I don’t think he was resisting anymore. “I felt that comment related to being homophobic.”

The exact comment was not disclosed in the report – but PC Seal told the tribunal that he felt offended by it, as he has a gay brother.

It is the first public misconduct hearing to be held by Lincolnshire Police, following national reforms earlier this year.

Mr Woolerton appeared on series five of Police Interceptors. His profile on the show’s website lists him as a qualified Advanced Driver whose favourite show is Top Gear.

The hearing continues.

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