London: Commissioner Cressida Dick, Head of London’s Metropolitan Police (Met), announced Thursday February 10 evening that she has resigned as Britain’s top cop.
Dick, the first woman to lead the country’s largest police force, had been under pressure over a number of issues that recently generated adverse publicity for the Met, Xinhua news agency reported.
The Police Chief said her decision followed contact with the Mayor of London Sadiq Khan earlier on Thursday.
“It is clear that the Mayor no longer has sufficient confidence in my leadership to continue. He has left me no choice but to step aside as Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police Service,” she added in a statement.
Dick said at the Mayor’s request she agreed to stay on for a short period to ensure the stability of the Met and its leadership while arrangements are made for a transition to a new Commissioner.
She has been at the helm at the Met during a period that saw terrorist attacks, the Grenfell fire, protests, and the pandemic. Dick also acknowledged the impact of a number of events that have harmed the image of the force.
She said the murder by a serving Met police officer of female citizen Sarah Everard, and many other awful cases recently have damaged confidence in police service.
In a statement from City Hall, Khan said urgent changes were required in the Met to root out the racism, sexism, homophobia, bullying, discrimination and misogyny that still exist, and he is not satisfied with the Commissioner’s response.
Earlier this February, a report by the Independent Office for Police Conduct, Britain’s police conduct authority, unveiled evidence of bullying and discrimination within the ranks of Met.
“Disgraceful behaviour” by police officers, including racism, misogyny, harassment and the exchange of offensive social media messages, was highlighted in the report.