Met 'pays £500,000' after woman PC drops race and sex claim

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The Independent Online

A female constable is to receive a payout believed to be worth £500,000 after she dropped a claim of racial and sexual discrimination against Scotland Yard.

A female constable is to receive a payout believed to be worth £500,000 after she dropped a claim of racial and sexual discrimination against Scotland Yard.

Joy Hendricks made two claims against the Metropolitan Police four years ago after she was cleared of attacking a senior colleague with a snooker cue. She was acquitted of assault after she described how she had suffered years of victimisation in the Met's anti-vice Territorial Support Group.

PC Hendricks, 39, said she had been sexually assaulted, given white face paint for Christmas, had her helmet sprayed with lighter fluid and was locked in a room for an hour by male colleagues. Her claims for race and sex discrimination were due to be heard by an employment tribunal in the autumn but will not now reach a public hearing after the force agreed a settlement.

A Scotland Yard spokesman refused to confirm the level of the payment last night, but said: "We have reached a settlement of her claim for sex and race discrimination. The settlement involves a payment of a sum of money to Miss Hendricks without admission of liability on the part of the Commissioner. In the light of the settlement employment tribunal proceedings will not go ahead."

In 1999, magistrates were told that Ms Hendricks punched Sergeant Mark Workman after he called her "Stevie Lawrence number two". She told the court she was provoked by the reference to the murdered teenager, which came after she had been publicly questioned about her sex life and called "dodgy".

Ms Hendricks, from Enfield, north London, went on sick leave from the force in March 1999 before the court case, but had her sick pay stopped the following year.

She went to the Court of Appeal to win the right to sue the force after the Employment Appeal Tribunal reversed a ruling in her favour by the Central London Employment Tribunal.