Police officer who hit ex-footballer Dalian Atkinson with baton guilty of gross misconduct

PC Mary Ellen Bettley-Smith repeatedly batoned ex-Aston Villa player Dalian Atkinson (Picture: PA)

A Police Constable who struck ex-Aston Villa player Dalian Atkinson with a baton after he had been Tasered has been found guilty of gross misconduct.

Former striker Mr Atkinson died after being kicked at least twice in the head by West Mercia Police officer Benjamin Monk outside his father’s home in Shropshire.

Mary Ellen Bettley-Smith was a probationary response officer when she attended the incident in Telford alongside Monk on August 15, 2016.

Monk had already Tasered Mr Atkinson, 48, to the ground before ‘stomping’ on his head repeatedly, with one witness describing a blow as ‘ferocious’.

Bettley-Smith, accused of assaulting Mr Atkinson, then struck the star six times with her baton.

Monk was jailed for eight years in 2021 after being convicted of manslaughter.

She was acquitted following a retrial in 2022.

But the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC), a police watchdog, said there was a gross misconduct disciplinary case.

A disciplinary panel today found her guilty of this, meaning she will face immediate dismissal from West Mercia Police.

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