Richard Walton

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Person.png Richard Walton LinkedIn Powerbase WebsiteRdf-icon.png
Richard Walton.jpg
BornJune 1965
Alma materLondon School of Economics, University of Portsmouth

Employment.png Director

In office
January 2016 - Present
EmployerCounter Terrorism Global Ltd

Employment.png Senior Associate Fellow

In office
January 2016 - Present
EmployerRoyal United Services Institute

Employment.png Counter Terrorism Consultant

In office
January 2016 - Present
EmployerCBS News

[[|x22px|link=Head of Counter Terrorism Command]] Head of Counter Terrorism Command

In office
May 2011 - 20 January 2016
EmployerMetropolitan Police
Resigned

Commander Richard Walton is the former head of New Scotland Yard's Counter Terrorism Command (SO15) who gave an extensive interview to the US Military Academy's Combating Terrorism Center on 19 January 2016.[1]

On 20 January 2016 – just six days after the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPPC) reported that he "would have a case to answer for misconduct" in relation to the Stephen Lawrence murder inquiry[2] – Commander Richard Walton resigned, thereby preventing the Metropolitan Police from taking any action against him.[3]

Moved "temporarily"

In March 2014, The Guardian reported that Commander Richard Walton had been moved "temporarily" from his post as head of the Metropolitan Police's Counter Terrorism Command and had been referred by his force to the IPCC.

The move came after a report by Mark Ellison QC commissioned by Home Secretary Theresa May found that during the 1998 Macpherson Inquiry into the Lawrence case the Met had a spy in the Lawrence camp.

Codenamed N81, the spy secretly passed "fascinating and valuable" intelligence on to a senior Met officer, Richard Walton, who was involved in drafting the then Met Commissioner Sir Paul Condon's defence of his force's conduct during the investigation.

In a statement the Met said:

"Following the publication of the Ellison report, the Deputy Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, Craig Mackey, has today made the decision to move Commander Richard Walton temporarily from his post as head of the counter-terrorism command, SO15, to a non-operational role. The Metropolitan Police has voluntarily referred the matter to the IPCC."

When the Met announced that Cdr Richard Walton would resume his role in the CTC on 1 December 2014, lawyer Imran Khan, who represents Stephen's mother Doreen Lawrence, said:

"She is appalled by the decision to put him back on operational duties even before the investigation is complete."[4]

IPPC apology

The head of the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC), Dame Anne Owers, said she had apologised to the Lawrence family for the police watchdog's part in prolonging the "family's search for the truth". Owers said the Ellison review made it clear that a 2006 IPCC investigation was "wrong" to conclude there was no evidence to suggest Scotland Yard withheld information in relation to corruption from the Macpherson Inquiry into Stephen Lawrence's death. She said:

"I fully recognise this has prolonged by many years the Lawrence family's search for the truth about the failed investigation into their son's murder. I have today written to Baroness Lawrence and Mr Lawrence to apologise for our part in this."

Vow to reform the Met

Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe said the publication of the "devastating" Ellison report, which found the Metropolitan Police spied on the Lawrence family, marked one of the worst days in his police career.

The Met Police Commissioner vowed to reform the force, which is the largest in Britain and whose leaders have made similar pledges in the past. It was the first time Hogan-Howe had commented since publication of the Ellison report into allegations of corruption shielding the killers of Lawrence and into undercover officers spying on the dead teenager's grieving family. Hogan-Howe said:

"This was a devastating report for the Metropolitan police and one of the worst days that I have seen as a police officer."[5]

Full truth yet to emerge

Home Secretary Theresa May branded the revelations about the Lawrence case, some 21 years after the murder, as "profoundly shocking and disturbing", adding that "policing stands damaged today". She said the full truth had yet to emerge.

David Cameron subsequently said on Twitter:

"Like the Home Secretary, I find the conclusions of the Stephen Lawrence review profoundly shocking. It's important we have a full inquiry."[6]

References