Avon and Somerset Police chief constable Nick Gargan has been asked to resign from his £175,000-a-year post after he was found guilty of eight counts of misconduct. Gargan was suspended from his role on full pay in May last year pending an investigation into claims he breached rules by making inappropriate advances to female colleagues and by leaking internal emails. Earlier this month he was issued with eight final written warnings over the offences but pressure grew to such an extent that he was asked to step down by police and crime commissioner Sue Mountstevens.
The call marks a spectacular fall from grace by Gargan, who lasted just 14 months in the job before he was suspended for a year and half in May last year. He faced 10 charges of gross misconduct and three of misconduct but was cleared of being a sex pest in July. The offences he was found guilty of relate to leaking data. Gargan was due to start a phased return as the force's leader but public opprobrium has led to Mountstevens requesting that he step away from the role.
More than 1,200 people signed a petition for Gargan, who has been working with the National Police Chiefs Council since his suspension was lifted, to be removed as chief constable and the decision to ask him to resign came after Mountstevens said he no longer commanded the confidence of the area and had "let down" colleagues and communities.