A senior police officer who wrote an anti-drugs strategy for the Metropolitan Police allegedly took LSD and magic mushrooms whereas off responsibility and smoked hashish each day, a tribunal has heard.
Commander Julian Bennett, who has served within the pressure since 1976, is alleged to have smoked hashish earlier than breakfast and had common events at his flat in 2019.
He’s additionally accused of failing to offer a urine pattern for testing and mendacity about why he had not achieved so.
Mark Ley-Morgan KC, representing the Metropolitan Police, instructed the tribunal in Southwark, south London: “In about mid-October 2019 Sheila Gomes moved into the officer’s flat, staying till about Christmas 2019.
“Between November 27 and December 10 2019 she despatched (her pal) Mario a WhatsApp message by which she referred to Commander Bennett … smoking hashish on the flat.
“Shortly earlier than 10am on December 7 2019 she used her cell phone to take images of a bag of hashish, cigarette paper, tobacco and lighters mendacity on a glass desk within the flat front room.
“She moved out simply earlier than Christmas that yr.
“On July 17 2020 she telephoned the Metropolitan Police to report that Commander Bennett had been smoking hashish earlier than work.”
Ms Gomes instructed the listening to the flat was “like an Amsterdam espresso store” due to the officer’s alleged actions.
She instructed the listening to beneath questioning from Mr Ley-Morgan: “It will begin early within the morning, earlier than breakfast and earlier than he would go away and go to work.
“Generally when he was arriving at house it was there. I by no means noticed him eat earlier than going to work.”
She mentioned she believed he was a lawyer somewhat than a senior police officer till after she stopped residing with him.
Ms Gomes added that she had by no means seen him in uniform.
The nurse went on: “I didn’t prefer it in any respect. Why did I’ve to reside in a spot the place it was simply hashish within the air, I used to be simply making an attempt to breathe oxygen.
“He (the officer) was the one who was utilizing the hashish, I’ll say a number of instances through the day he would deliver it in.
“If he would go to work (he would do it) not less than earlier than going to work and arriving at house.”
She mentioned his behaviour was “erratic” and that she would repeatedly ask her about her work rota.
She mentioned: “He was extraordinarily controlling and he was very anxious.
“The very first thing he would ask me once I was waking up was ‘when are you going to work, when are you again, when are you off?
“I discovered him narcissistic and had a scarcity of empathy in the direction of most residents I might say. When he was not smoking he was very far and wide.
“He’s nonetheless denying it. He’s nonetheless denying one thing that I noticed in entrance of me once I was residing with him.”
She mentioned her housemate instructed her “have a look at his age and he’s doing medication. He’s very open-minded. He’s smoking weed round individuals who are of their 20s”.
She instructed the tribunal she had obtained threatening messages after reporting the allegations however they aren’t mentioned to have come from the officer.
John Beggs KC, representing Mr Bennett, requested Ms Gomes why she had not realised the officer labored for the police when he purchased newspaper cuttings that includes himself again house, which she claimed she had learn.
She claimed the article “had not talked about that he was a member of the Metropolitan Police”.
She had additionally instructed the listening to her flatmate who instructed her concerning the LSD and magic mushrooms allegations was a “liar”.
When questioned by Mr Beggs, she mentioned he solely lied about whether or not he was “addicted” to medication somewhat than extra typically.
He additionally accused her of giving an inconsistent account about whether or not the officer was smoking hashish “from day one” after she moved in.
In a single alternate, when she was questioned a few date when Mr Bennett had surgical procedure and wouldn’t affirm it with out notes, he instructed her “you’re a deeply unreasonable particular person”, accusing her of being a “liar and hypersensitive”.
He added: “Any first rate witness wouldn’t argue such a foolish level.”
Mr Ley-Morgan mentioned a medicine take a look at was authorised on July 20 2020, and a day later, within the presence of an assistant commissioner, Mr Bennett was requested to offer a pattern.
It was “made clear” the order to present a pattern was a lawful order however Mr Bennett refused and mentioned he would resign, the tribunal heard.
He instructed officers he had been taking CBD (cannabidiol) to deal with facial palsy and was anxious the pattern would come up constructive for an harmless cause, the tribunal heard.
An earlier listening to was instructed he was accessing CBD oil “from Holland and Barrett and the like.”
Ms Gomes mentioned she had by no means seen any proof of him utilizing CBD oil for this objective.
The listening to was instructed the allegations about him taking magic mushrooms on vacation in France and LSD at a celebration are “rumour” that Ms Gomes was instructed by a housemate of hers and the officer’s.
Mr Ley-Morgan mentioned Mr Bennett’s rationalization for not offering a pattern was “nonsensical” as it could have give you a a lot decrease studying if it was not getting used recreationally.
Mr Bennett wrote the pressure’s medication strategy for 2017-21 as a commander for territorial policing.
The doc, referred to as Dealing With The Influence Of Medication On Communities, arrange plans to lift “consciousness of the influence of drug misuse”.
Freedom of knowledge requests confirmed Mr Bennett presided over 74 police misconduct hearings involving 90 officers between June 2010 and February 2012.
Out of the hearings involving Mr Bennett, 56 officers had been dismissed – greater than three quarters.
He chaired 69 hearings throughout that point and two officers had been dismissed for medication misuse, the figures confirmed.
Mr Bennett is accused of breaching the pressure’s skilled requirements for discreditable conduct 3 times, honesty and integrity twice and orders and directions as soon as.
His actions are alleged to have amounted to gross misconduct.
He denies the allegations and has been suspended on full pay since July 2021.
The tribunal continues.