The ‘tired and hungry’ policeman keeps his job after he fell in the race for the journey home at teatime.


John Byrne faced a misconduct hearing after he pleaded guilty to dangerous driving.

A PC who crashed his police car after driving through a red light in a rush caused by his hunger has kept his job.

John Byrne reached speeds of up to 80 miles per hour in the moments before the accident when he raced home to drink his tea on the table.

Byrne’s hearing followed his appearance at Manchester Crown Court last month.

The 28-year-old received a final written warning following the deliberations of the panel chaired by Andy Cooke, Merseyside’s Chief Constable.

The disciplinary panel found that he had breached professional standards, but not to the extent that his actions justified his dismissal.

The case heard “tired and hungry”. Byrne activated the blue lights on his police car and raced through South Liverpool after his wife sent him a picture of his tea.

He then crashed into a BMW on November 2, 2019 at 8 pm on Allerton Road.

Before the accident, the Hyundai had reached a speed of 80 miles per hour in a 40-minute zone and had driven through a red light.

Byrne, who had been part of the Queen’s ceremonial guard during his time with the RAF, had been challenged by a colleague after he turned on the light “without good reason”.

Byrne said he had worked a 12-hour shift and still had to deal with a lot of paperwork before he could finish. He was “tired and hungry” and had not eaten anything that day.

He added: “He has never done it before and bitterly regrets his decision. The only reason why he did it was because his marriage was under considerable strain last November. He and his wife are now in counseling through their church.”

Richard Orme, who defended him in court, said his client had been working a 12-hour shift for some time because Merseyside police at the time had concerns about gun crime in Liverpool.

PC Byrne admitted to a case of dangerous driving and was banned from driving for 12 months and received a 12 month community order.

In addition, he must complete 40 hours of unpaid work and pass an extended driving test before he is allowed back on the road. The officer was also ordered to pay 535 pounds sterling for the costs of prosecution.

The Squad said: “Following a hearing on Constable Byrne in a special case of misconduct which took place on Tuesday 20 October at Merseyside Police Headquarters, Canning Place, the Officer was convicted by Chief Constable Cooke of breaching the standards of professional conduct, namely orders and instructions and also of discrediting behaviour, in breach of the Police Ordinance (Conduct) 2012.

“The officer received a final written warning.”

The result of his disciplinary hearing was published on the Merseyside Police website.


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