A police officer who was caught on CCTV camera repeatedly punching a suspected female shoplifter and pinning her to the ground by her neck in a Regent Street clothing store has been spared jail.
Pc James Kiddie was found guilty of common assault and sentenced to a 150-hour community order and £500 at Westminster Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday.
The court heard that Pc Kiddie was called to the Regent Street branch of Uniqlo by security staff who had detained Sarah Reed for suspected shoplifting.
Pc Kiddie, who attended the scene alone, told the court that he was trying to search her bag when Ms Reed bit his finger and claimed she had Aids.
The CCTV footage shows Pc Kiddie grabbing Ms Reed by the hair and dragging her to the floor before punching her three times in head. He then pins her down as he waits for backup to arrive.
Pc Kiddie has been suspended and faces a special misconduct hearing following the trial.
Territorial Policing Assistant Commissioner Simon Byrne said: "Police officers join the Met to protect and serve the public. Today his colleagues will be sickened by what they see.
"Where an officer's behaviour falls short of the very high standards that we and the public expect of them, then it is only right that they are held to account for their actions.
"The actions of one officer abusing his position in this way can cast a shadow over the thousands of officers who are on duty right now demonstrating bravery, compassion, integrity and professionalism.
"PC Kiddie's behaviour that day, which was identified and reported by another officer, was wrong. For that he has been held accountable. There is no place in the Metropolitan Police Service for officers and staff who do not uphold our values."