Mystery surrounds suspension of top cop

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Mystery still surrounds the suspension of Lincolnshire Police Chief Constable Neil Rhodes over “potential conduct matters” being looked into by a force disciplinary body.

Mr Rhodes was temporarily relieved of his duties by the county’s Police and Crime Commissioner Alan Hardwick while as yet unspecified allegations are considered.

Deputy Chief Constable Alec Wood has been appointed Acting Chief Constable by Mr Hardwick who said he was unable to comment further on Mr Rhodes’s position when asked by the Spalding Guardian.

But in a statement, Mr Hardwick said: “The Police and Crime Commissioner for Lincolnshire has been made aware of potential conduct matters involving the Temporary Chief Constable of Lincolnshire Police, Neil Rhodes.

“The Commissioner can confirm that Mr Rhodes has been suspended from duty while investigations are being considered.

“It should be emphasised that suspension is a neutral act and it should not be inferred from the decision to suspend that the potential conduct matters have been proven.

“Following consultation with the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC), the matters in question have been referred to them.”

Mr Rhodes was appointed Chief Constable on a temporary basis in March 2012 and his position was due to be reviewed next month by Mr Hardwick after his election as Lincolnshire Police and Crime Commissioner last November.

An IPCC spokeswoman said: “We have received information from the Lincolnshire Police and Crime Commissioner in relation to a potential conduct matter concerning the force’s temporary Chief Constable, Neil Rhodes.

“We are presently considering the information but the IPCC is not at this stage formally investigating.”