A Greater Manchester Police officer has been sacked after admitting an animal cruelty offence, following a video that showed him punching a puppy.
Police Sergeant Martin Dunn admitted gross misconduct at an independent disciplinary panel and has been dismissed without notice.
The sickening video shared by the Manchester Evening News shows him approaching the puppy, a five-month-old Springer Spaniel called Frank, in a garden after the young dog had defecated in the house.
After shouting ‘you b****rd’, Dunn is then seen to punch the puppy several times, while the dog yelps and cries.
The horrible incident in March 2021 was filmed by a neighbour and reported to the police.
He had pleaded guilty to causing unnecessary harm to an animal contrary to the Animal Welfare Act at Leeds Magistrates’ Court in April 2021.
Dunn received a sentence that included a community order requiring 120 hours of unpaid work and a ban from keeping animals for five years.
Since the incident was reported and investigated by West Yorkshire Police, he had been on restricted duties.
More than 20,000 people had signed a petition calling for Dunn to be sacked from the force.
Chief Superintendent Michael Allen, Head of GMP’s Professional Standards Branch, said: “Greater Manchester Police expects the highest standards of conduct from its officers, both on and off duty, and Dunn’s actions clearly fell far short of these standards.
“The vast majority of police officers and staff fulfil their duties in serving the public to the highest standard and demonstrate exemplary behaviour in their private lives.
“Public trust and confidence in the police is vital and GMP does not underestimate the importance of officers and staff demonstrating the highest standards of professional behaviour towards not only members of the public but also to animals.
“Having a criminal conviction for animal cruelty makes Dunn wholly unsuitable to continue serving as a police officer and his cruelty towards Frank the dog is ultimately why he has lost his job.
“Dunn’s actions, which have rightly been condemned by the public and his colleagues, bring the profession into disrepute and damage the confidence the public has in police officers.
“I would like to thank West Yorkshire Police, who investigated this case criminally, and, working with the Crown Prosecution Service, secured the conviction at criminal court.
“GMP’s Professional Standards Branch has a responsibility to hold policing to account, taking action where misconduct is identified, and under new management this work is now accelerating, focusing both on legacy cases and new reports.”
Martin Dunn’s defence said he ‘unreservedly accepted the allegations’ and that it was an isolated incident.
Paul Forster, the chairman of the independent panel, said the decision had been reached to ‘maintain public confidence in the police service’.
He added: “Hearings like this are about the individual but also about much more, with bigger and wider considerations in play.
“Therefore, the most appropriate outcome is dismissal without notice.”
How to report animal cruelty
If you see, or suspect, that a person may be treating an animal badly, whether this is physical violence, neglect or any other form of cruelty, they should be reported to the RSPCA at www.rspca.org.uk/utilities/contactus/reportcruelty.
Reports can be made to 0300 1234 999. The call will cost the same as any call to a UK landline number.
The Irish star, who just landed his first UK number one album, wants to make customers ‘feel like a big deal’, apparently.
And seeing as he shot to fame with his viral flashmob stunts, he seems like a good choice to be popping up from behind Amazon lockers as people pick up their online shop.
Cian Ducrot comments: “My flash mob performances are all about spreading joy and music, and I loved helping shoppers feel like a big deal at the Amazon Lockers.”
Amazon’s Prime Big Deal Day sales event, which is taking place on 10 and 11 October 2023, will also see the brand hide hundreds of items in Amazon Lockers around the UK.
Over those two days, Prime members who are collecting shopping will be given the opportunity to pick a code, which will open a locker containing a free item to take away.
Surprise locker locations will be in London, Cardiff, Liverpool, Newcastle, Belfast, Glasgow, Birmingham and Manchester on 10 and 11 October.
The giveaway runs alongside a Prime member exclusive shopping event, featuring deals on everything Prime members need for Autumn, from making an early start to festive shopping, to stocking up on seasonal essentials.
Council Tax in Manchester could be raised to support the city’s ‘poorest households’
Manchester City Council has laid out plans to potentially raise residents’ Council Tax to help support the “poorest households” in the city.
Councillors are proposing that, under the city’s current Council Tax Support scheme, the amount owed by a household is reduced by up to 100% for pension-age residents with the lowest incomes, and up to 82.5% for working-age residents with the lowest incomes from April 2024 – with the maximum reduction for working-age residents increased by 2.5% to 85%.
This means the maximum that those eligible for support would have to pay is just 15% of the bill, according to Manchester City Council.
At the same time, it’s being proposed that rules allowing reductions to be backdated, in instances where someone “has a good reason not to have claimed sooner”, are extended to allow up to a year’s back payments, rather than up to six months as is currently the case.
With the proposals all laid out, a consultation has been opened and residents living in the Manchester borough are now being asked for their views.
The Council Tax Support scheme currently provides around one fifth of Manchester households with help paying their Council Tax, but it’s estimated that these proposed changes would cost the Council around £770,000 in 2024/25.
This proposed raising of Council Tax also comes after the Council revealed earlier last month that £50 million in funding will go towards upgrading and improving social housing in Manchester over the next two years – with thousands of tenants living in social housing and Council-owned residential complexes across the city and wider borough set to benefit.
Residents in these properties are set receive what is being dubbed “transformational investment” to their homes before 2026.
“We are acutely aware that some residents are really struggling due to cost of living pressures,” admitted Cllr Rabnawaz Akbar, who is the Executive Member for Finance at Manchester City Council on the proposals, “and this is why we’ve already introduced a range of measures to help people access food, advice and support.
“As part of this wider response, we want to go even further to help the poorest households in Manchester with their Council Tax, and that’s what these proposals are all about.
“We’re keen to hear your views on what we’re suggesting before we make a final decision.”