Queensland Police Commissioner Ian Stewart.
Queensland Police Commissioner Ian Stewart. David Stuart

Top cop made unlawful decision over misconduct claims

A JUDGE has found the police commissioner made an unlawful decision when he kept a former Rockhampton cop on office duties for alleged misconduct.

Senior Sergeant Bryan George Kennedy was working as deputy district officer in Rockhampton when he was dismissed in February 2011 for alleged misconduct.

It was alleged Mr Kennedy took a fridge from the Mt Isa PCYC that had been donated and transferred it to his new home in Rockhampton between 2008 and 2009.

It was also alleged he took 20 cartons of beer into a restricted alcohol zone while in charge of Doomadgee police station in Northern Queensland in 2007 and allowed a civilian to dress up in his uniform, including his gun.

In a judgment published online on Friday, Supreme Court Justice Jean Dalton said the Queensland Civil Administrative Tribunal in 2012 overturned the deputy police commissioner's decision to dismiss Mr Kennedy over the fridge incident and ordered that the officer be suspended, not sacked.

The tribunal also dismissed the deputy commissioner's findings from the Doomadgee incidents.

Mr Kennedy was assigned to another role as communications room supervisor in Rockhampton, where he was paid the same as deputy district officer.

But Mr Kennedy was unhappy with the new role and asked for it to be reviewed.

Despite a review board finding in Mr Kennedy's favour, deputy police commissioner Ian Stewart (who is now Police Commissioner), fought against this.

He referred to a section of legislation allowing him to have the final say, and Mr Kennedy was required to stay in the communications room.

But Justice Dalton said Mr Kennedy was denied natural justice because Commissioner Stewart was not impartial and had "firm views" on the matter.

"(Mr Kennedy) says that as a matter of natural justice he was entitled to have someone who was not apparently biased," she said.

Justice Dalton found in favour of Mr Kennedy, which will allow him to continue to fight his case in court.

- APN NEWSDESK



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