Work as usual for police chief under IPCC investigation

SPEAKING OUT Hampshire's Police and Crime Commissioner Simon Hayes
SPEAKING OUT Hampshire's Police and Crime Commissioner Simon Hayes

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HAMPSHIRE’S Police and Crime Commissioner said he will carry on his role as normal, despite being under investigation.

Simon Hayes is being investigated for allegedly lying about where he lives.

The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) is looking into the accusation that Mr Hayes lives with his wife Miranda in Earls Barton, Northamptonshire.

But on his nomination form for his post of PCC, he gave his address as Bishop’s Waltham.

If the IPCC decides Mr Hayes was not living inside his police force area the day he was elected, he could face prosecution for election fraud.

He could also be sacked from his £85,000-a-year role, in which guidelines state the commissioner must live within the authority’s area, and trigger a by-election.

But Mr Hayes said he is ‘comfortable’ with the investigation and it’s ‘business as usual’.

He said: ‘This is not a new accusation – it was said during the election.

‘It has never been a secret that my wife is a vicar, and that can involve living in different parts of the country.

‘I’m comfortable with the investigation, and hope it is looked into as quickly as it can be.

‘Until then, I will be carrying on as normal.

‘At the moment I live in Hampshire, and I have done for a long time.

‘I lived here until the election, during the election and after the election.

‘There is no reason why I should not be carrying on with my work as normal.’

The IPCC is investigating a similar allegation that has been made about the North Wales Police and Crime Commissioner, Winston Roddick.

An IPCC spokesman confirmed it was investigating both PCCs.

They said: ‘We have received a referral and are at the early stages of an investigation. We are unable to comment further at this stage.’

The man Mr Hayes defeated to win the poll – former Conservative MP Michael Mates – is also under investigation for allegedly lying about his address.

Police have been looking into claims that Mr Mates was living in West Sussex when he stood as PCC.

Mr Hayes took on the role in November last year, replacing the now abolished police authorities.