A JUDGE has found a police chief constable was right to fire a ‘racist’ police officer after he made a ‘foul joke’.

Nicholas Barnes, who was a probationary constable with Thames Valley Police from January 7, 2019 until discharge on June 2, 2021, was sacked after making a racist joke on April 15, 2020 to his colleagues at High Wycombe police station.

Several of his colleagues reported the matter to a police sergeant and an investigation commenced on May 4.

READ MORE: Person hospitalised after 'incident' near Reading shopping centre

He was later dismissed but launched a legal case challenging his dismissal, stating the decision was ‘unlawful, irrational and unfair’.

However, in a decision published on Friday, November 3 by the High Court of Justice, Judge Nicholas Lavender dismissed the application for a judicial review, stating he did not find it ‘unfair or irrational’ for the defendant to ‘express himself’ as he did.

The report summarised the incident, stating that Barnes accepted he had made an ‘inappropriate and racist’ joke and that he had waited until senior officers left the room before telling the joke.

He accepted he was guilty of misconduct but denied being guilty of gross misconduct. He was initially given a written warning following a disciplinary panel review but was later dismissed after the previous Thames Valley Chief Constable decided he could not continue under his command.

READ MORE: In the Dock: Man destroys almost £1k vape stand the latest in court

Barnes then raised the legal case, claiming the decision to dismiss him was unlawful and flew in the face of the disciplinary panel's view that he should be allowed to continue, although with a stern warning about his conduct.

A hearing at London’s High Court in May, Barnes legal team highlighted the panel’s original findings that he had ‘acted out of character’ and had expressed remorse.

During the misconduct panel, Barnes said: “This experience has left me deeply humbled and has been a steep learning curve for me.

“I have learnt more than ever the importance of being politically correct and sensitive in all situations and that there are no safe places or times to use unacceptable language such as I did”.

However, Judge Lavender did not find it ‘unfair or irrational’ for the chief constable to have taken a different view of the evidence to the panel.

READ MORE: JAILED IN OCTOBER: Berkshire criminals sent behind bars

The chief constable explained at the time: “I conclude that the behaviours of PC Barnes are so at odds with being a well conducted constable that, despite his remorse and self-reflection, and despite his otherwise unquestionable performance, I am satisfied that he is not likely to become a well-conducted constable.”