Hampshire Constabulary was among thee forces in the country that ran the two-hour educational sessions for people accused of racism, sexism, misogyny and transphobia

Hate-crime awareness courses are SCRAPPED by Hampshire police following controversy over army veteran arrested over a tweet

  • Hampshire Constabulary has opted to axe a hate crime awareness course 
  • The sessions were for people accused of racism, homophobia and misogyny
  • But it faced controversy after a man, 51, was offered the course over a tweet
  • Commissioner Donna Jones has announced the force would discontinue it 

A hate crime awareness course that gave offenders the chance to rehabilitate themselves and avoid prosecution has been scrapped by a police chief.

Hampshire Constabulary was among three forces in the country that ran the two-hour educational sessions for people accused of racism, sexism, misogyny and transphobia.

The restorative justice scheme was funded out of the force’s Police and Crime Commissioner’s budget, The Telegraph reports.

However, it faced controversy when a 51-year-old man was offered the course after retweeting an image of Pride flags in the shape of a swastika.

The army veteran was told by police he could avoid prosecution if he took part in the session before they had conducted any investigation.

He was subsequently released with no further action.

Donna Jones, Tory PCC for Hampshire, revealed to media she is ending the contract with the company which manages the programme.

Hampshire Constabulary was among thee forces in the country that ran the two-hour educational sessions for people accused of racism, sexism, misogyny and transphobia

Hampshire Constabulary was among thee forces in the country that ran the two-hour educational sessions for people accused of racism, sexism, misogyny and transphobia

Donna Jones, PCC for Hampshire, revealed to media she is ending the contract with the company which manages the programme

Donna Jones, PCC for Hampshire, revealed to media she is ending the contract with the company which manages the programme

She told The Telegraph: ‘I inherited a restorative justice contract when I was elected into office last year and the restorative hate-crime awareness course was part of that.

‘I have decided that this hate-crime awareness course will no longer be offered in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight by way of a community resolution option. The change needs to be planned properly but will take place in the coming weeks.

‘In saying this, I want to be clear that when someone has been targeted and suffered violence or abuse because of their protected characteristics, and the incident reaches the evidential threshold for a hate crime, perpetrators can expect police action. This is vital.’

Restorative Solutions is the firm behind the courses, which it continues to operate in North Yorkshire and West Yorkshire.

A spokesman for Hampshire Constabulary added: ‘We can confirm that officers explained that the hate-crime awareness course would be offered as an alternative to prosecution, in the event that the alleged offence was admitted.’

MailOnline has contacted Restorative Solutions for comment.

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