MentalHealthCop: Inspector Michael Brown's Twitter account re-opened after investigation by West Midlands Police

The force said that the account was re-instated after Michael Brown received 'advice' from his employers

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The Independent Online

The Twitter account of a police inspector who writes an award-winning mental health blog has been reinstated, after it was suspended by his force last week.

According to West Midlands Police, Michael Brown, who used the Twitter handle @MentalHealthCop, was allowed to re-open the account after he accepted “formal advice following an international investigation”.

The investigation was launched after it was alleged he had misused his account.

Mr Brown had retained his 17,000 plus followers on the social media site when his feed went live again on Wednesday.

On his Twitter feed he has written regularly about policing and mental health issues, posting more than 49,000 tweets.

His Mental Health Cop blog, which is linked to the Twitter account, is well-regarded by mental health experts, and won him the national mental health charity Mind's 2012 digital media award.

In a statement, the force said:  “The account, MentalHealthCop - a twitter and blog site managed by a response inspector with a keen interest in mental health issues - was suspended on February 14 following allegations of inappropriate use of direct messaging and social media.

“A swift professional standards investigation established that the officer accepted there had been some inappropriate use and informal advice was given.”

Assistant Chief Constable Garry Forsyth said: “I and my colleagues at West Midlands Police are proud of our social media endeavours, working closely with officers and staff to engage and communicate in new and innovative ways.

”As with any organisation which communicates with the public, we have to ensure that there are parameters around the way information is shared, particular when that information can be sensitive.

“I am pleased that this issue has been resolved in a speedy manner to the satisfaction of those directly involved.”