A highly decorated police officer convicted of possessing a child abuse video on her phone has been sacked without notice by the Metropolitan Police.
Superintendent Novlett Robyn Williams, 54, was dismissed with immediate effect after a special disciplinary hearing on Friday found her conviction amounted to “gross misconduct”.
Williams, who was commended for her work after the Grenfell Tower disaster, was sentenced to 200 hours community service for possessing an indecent image at the Old Bailey in November.
The disgraced officer is “disappointed and devastated” by the decision, according to the Police Superintendents Association, which was supporting her through the trial and the disciplinary process.
She continues to deny any wrongdoing and is appealing against her conviction and sentence.
Williams is now considering whether to appeal the decision to dismiss her.
She was called to the hearing over allegations she had breached standards of professional behaviour following an investigation by the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC).
Following her dismissal, the Met said in a statement: “An independent investigation was carried out by the Independent Office for Police Conduct and the MPS agreed with the IOPC that Supt Williams should face a special case hearing following her conviction.
“Assistant Commissioner Helen Ball, professionalism, sitting with a legal adviser, conducted the hearing and found that Supt Williams’ conviction was discreditable conduct and amounted to gross misconduct.
“The MPS is aware Supt Williams has lodged an application for leave to appeal her conviction with the Court of Appeal.
“However, the regulations under which this special case hearing was held require such hearings take place without delay.”
Victor Marshall OBE, professional standards coordinator at the Police Superintendents Association, said: “The hearing heard overwhelming and unprecedented support for Superintendent Williams from communities and people, both inside and outside policing about her dedication to public service in the 36 years she has served.
“She has continuously denied any wrongdoing and the Police Superintendents’ Association has supported her throughout this process.
“We will continue to do so throughout the legal appeal being made against her conviction and sentence, and consideration of appeal against this decision.”
Jurors in November heard how Williams received the video from her older sister, co-defendant Jennifer Hodge, 56, via WhatsApp.
The court accepted Williams did not view the footage but the jury was not convinced she was unaware of it being on her phone.
Hodge was sentenced to 100 hours’ unpaid work after being convicted of distributing an indecent image of a child.
She received the footage from her partner, bus driver Dido Massivi, 63, who was found guilty of the same count as well as possessing extreme pornography.
Massivi was handed an 18-month prison sentence, suspended for two years and ordered to carry out 200 hours unpaid work.