Judge blasts CPS after top cop Andrew Johnstone was prosecuted for 'shoulder-barging' a colleague

Chief Inspector Andrew Johnstone, 51, was acquitted of assaulting colleague Penny Mills.

The court heard she said she was jolted from behind at a senior officers’ leadership workshop.

But CCTV from the building failed to show the incident, said to have taken place at New Scotland Yard in January. And after Mr Johnstone was cleared at Westminster magistrates’ court yesterday, chairman of the bench Richard Blake asked why the case had made it that far.

He urged prosecutors to consider if a charge would have been made “if this happened in a tea room, at a bus station, and whether it was appropriate to bring this prosecution”.

The court heard Ms Mills had already complained to bosses about Mr Johnstone’s behaviour when he was her line manager in the Met’s Roads and Transport Policing Command.

And she was overlooked for promotion to a senior role in favour of Mr Johnstone.

Defending, Gerry Boyle QC said: “If the prosecution is to be believed, Mr Johnstone took an opportunistic and career-threatening gamble of huge proportions in the presence of others.”

Mr Johnstone denied shoulder-barging Ms Mills, saying: “That’s not the kind of person I am — I didn’t do it.”

A spokesman for the Police Superintendents’ Association said: “We are grateful to the judge for seeing the inherent weakness in this case.

“We are deeply troubled that this case was ever considered for referral to the Crown Prosecution Service by the Metropolitan Police, let alone brought to trial.”

The Met said: “Chief Insp Johnstone is currently on restricted duties. This will be reviewed.”

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