The Metropolitan police is facing another scandal after serving officer David Carrick admitted to being a serial rapist.
The force has apologised after David Carrick, 48, pleaded guilty to 49 rape and sexual offences against 12 women across two decades.
Carrick, who admitted 24 counts of rape, was suspended from duty when he was arrested in October 2021, had come to the attention of police over nine incidents, including rape allegations, between 2000 and 2021 when one of his victims reported him following publicity about Wayne Couzens.
He has been sacked by the Metropolitan Police at a misconduct hearing held in his absence in west London.
Carrick admitted to raping nine women, some on multiple occasions over months or years.
The BBC reports that Carrick met some victims through online dating sites such as Tinder and Badoo.
He controlled what his victims wore, what they ate, where they slept and even stopped some of the women from speaking to their own children.
Carrick also admitted to false imprisonment offences, as on a number of occasions forced one of his victims into a small cupboard under the stairs at his home.
Shilpa Shah, a lawyer from the Crown Prosecution Service, who built the case against him told the Guardian he used his role as a police officer to gain victim's trust.
"It enabled him to gain the trust of the victims at the beginning. Because he did say: ‘You’ll be safe with me because I’m a police officer.’ And I think that then enabled him to gain their trust and then get into relationships with them.”
Carrick acted "charming" when he met women, Shah added. "He would appear to be fun, loving, charming, charismatic, but he was very manipulative, very self-confident, almost to the point of being cocky, and he knew what he was doing.”
"A large number of these sexual offences were committed within three separate controlling and coercive relationships; others happened during one-off encounters. It didn’t matter to Carrick who the victim was – a new girlfriend, a long-term partner … a school friend or a stranger – he would still abuse them.”
Carrick's full list of offences are:
24 counts of rape
nine counts of sexual assault
five counts of assault by penetration
three counts of coercive and controlling behaviour
three counts of false imprisonment
two counts of attempted rape
one count of attempted sexual assault by penetration
one count of causing a person to engage in sexual activity without consent
one count of indecent assault
What mistakes did the Met make?
Following his guilty pleas, the Met Police confirmed Carrick "had come to the attention of the Met and other forces on nine occasions prior to October 2021".
The assistant commissioner, Barbara Gray, said: “There was an escalation of abusive behaviours that should have been identified. I would not expect anyone with that pattern of behaviour to be in the Met today.”
Carrick, from Stevenage, was also the subject of five complaints from the public while serving with the Met Police, according to the force.
Here are a few of the incidents that passed the Met by.:
In 2000, a year before he joined the police, Carrick was alleged to have sent malicious communications to a partner who wanted to leave him, and also faced a claim of burglary. The next year, he passed vetting and joined the Met.
In 2002, he was accused of assaulting and harassing a former partner, which came during his probation period.
Despite reportedly being aware of complaints, in 2009 the force entrusted him to carry a gun and guard sensitive sites in the parliamentary and diplomatic protection command and revetted and passed Carrick again in 2017.
In 2009, the local force received a report of a domestic incident involving Carrick. In 2016, he was a suspect in a Hampshire police investigation of alleged harassment.
In 2017, police spoke to him after he was ejected from a Reading nightclub for being drunk.
In 2019, he was alleged to have grabbed a woman by the neck, and no action was taken.
In July 2021, Carrick faced an earlier claim of rape. He was arrested, but not suspended from duty.
Colleagues knew him as “Bastard Dave”. The Met insisted the reference was not because of his treatment of women, but because his workmates thought he could be cruel and mean.
How has the Met responded?
After Carrick's first guilty pleas in December, the Met stopped his pay and began an accelerated misconduct process, in which he was today suspended.
A review of 1,000 serving Met officers who have been accused of domestic violence or sex offences, including rape, is also underway.
Met Police Commissioner Sir Mark Rowley said the force had "failed" and Carrick "should not have been a police officer".
Gray added: "We should have spotted his pattern of abusive behaviour and because we didn't, we missed opportunities to remove him from the organisation.
"We are truly sorry that being able to continue to use his role as a police officer may have prolonged the suffering of his victims.
"We know they felt unable to come forward sooner because he told them they would not be believed."
How have other public figures reacted?
Jaswant Narwal, chief crown prosecutor for the Crown Prosecution Service, said: "Carrick held a role where he was trusted with the responsibility of protecting the public, but yet over 17 years, in his private life, he did the exact opposite.
"This is a man who relentlessly degraded, belittled and sexually assaulted and raped women.
"As time went on, the severity of his offending intensified as he became emboldened, thinking he would get away with it."
She said the "scale of the degradation Carrick subjected his victims to is unlike anything I've encountered in my 34 years with the Crown Prosecution Service".
Speaking outside court, Det Ch Insp Iain Moor, from Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire Major Crime Unit, said: "The details of David Carrick's crimes are truly shocking.
"I suspect many will be appalled and sickened by his actions, but I hope the victims and the public more widely are reassured that no-one is above the law and the police service will relentlessly pursue those offenders who target women in this way."
He said he expected even more victims to come forward.
Harriet Wistrich, director of campaign group the Centre for Women's Justice, said: "We have known for some time that there has been a culture of impunity for such offending by police officers.
"Recent reports show a woefully deficient vetting and misconduct system and a largely unchallenged culture of misogyny in some sections of the Met.
"That Carrick could have not only become a police officer but remain a serving officer for so long whilst he perpetrated these horrific crimes against women, is terrifying."
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said he was "absolutely sickened and appalled" by Carrick's crimes.
He said "serious questions must be answered about how he was able to abuse his position as an officer in this horrendous manner".
The prime minister's official spokesman said it was "an appalling case" and that Rishi Sunak's "thoughts are with all of [Carrick's] victims".
"There is no place in our police forces for officers who fall so seriously short of the acceptable standards of behaviour and are not fit to wear the uniform."
Home secretary Suella Braverman said the case would "affect people's confidence in the police".
"This day is a sobering day for the Metropolitan Police Service, and indeed the whole policing family throughout the country," she added.
What other scandals has the force faced recently?
Meanwhile, the sorry affair comes after the horrific Sarah Everard case in which Wayne Couzens was handed a whole life sentence.