Harry Dunn: Chief constable criticised for ‘sad but predictable’ tweet

The parents of Harry Dunn are calling for a chief constable to resign over an “outrageous” comment he made on social media about the case.

On Tuesday night, Nick Adderley, chief constable for Northamptonshire Police, responded to a tweet about how the family had instructed lawyers in the US to sue Anne Sacoolas for civil damages and the Trump administration for “misconduct and cover up”. Mr Adderley replied: “How sad but how predictable!!”.

Sky News understands that the tweet was online for less than 10 minutes before it was deleted.

The Chief Constable’s force is investigating the death of Harry Dunn, who died in a collision near RAF Croughton in August.

The suspect, American driver Anne Sacoolas, claimed diplomatic immunity following the crash and returned to the US.

Harry’s parents, who have been unhappy with the inquiry into their son’s death, had already requested their lawyers refer Northamptonshire Police to the Independent Office for Police Conduct.

In a statement given to Sky News, they said of the tweet: “We couldn’t quite believe our eyes when we saw it. It is totally outrageous and absurd for him to take sides and it is clear now that he is just against us. We are so angry at him.

“He cannot continue in his job and we are calling on him to resign immediately for the good of our case and for the good of the people of Northamptonshire who should be able to rely on their head of police for impartiality and fairness.

“We have said numerous times that we have felt totally unsupported by Northants Police and not been kept updated on progress of the case in accordance with our rights under the victims code.”

Chief Constable Nick Adderley said: “The tweet was in reference to the profound sadness at the loss of Harry Dunn, that the spokesperson for the family has been absolutely clear on the next steps in fighting for justice for Harry and that the only recourse to justice that they feel they have available to them at the moment is through the US civil court system.

“I deleted it with a view to re-writing it with more context but was called away to deal with something else.

“I meant no offence by my tweet and apologise if it has been in any way misconstrued or misinterpreted.

“This is an extremely tragic case in which a young man has lost his life and Northamptonshire Police is committed to carrying out a thorough and comprehensive investigation with a view to submitting a completed file of evidence to the Crown Prosecution Service shortly.”

The county’s police, fire and crime commissioner Stephen Mold told Sky News that he had spoken to the chief constable about the tweet and said that “all Force communication” should “remain professional and sensitive”.

Mr Mold said: “I know that Northamptonshire Police has throughout, sought to investigate Harry Dunn’s death thoroughly and fairly so that the family can find the justice they seek.

“I am sorry that this tweet has distracted from the important work taking place to resolve this tragic situation. I am grateful that it was brought to my attention and I have spoken to the chief constable about the need for all force communication – on this and all other issues – to remain professional and sensitive at all times.”

“We have now seen the attempted explanations from Mr Adderley and the Police and Crime Commissioner Mr Mold,” spokesperson for The ‘Justice4Harry’ campaign, Radd Seiger told Sky News.

“They are both frankly incredulous and do not stand up to scrutiny. Even if it were true, Mr Adderley has displayed a staggering degree of unprofessionalism with this tweet such that he no longer commands our confidence”.

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