If a police trainee posts videos on the Internet that give the impression of fraudulent behavior, this justifies doubts about his character suitability for police service and thus his dismissal.

In October 2017, the 21-year-old applicant was appointed as a criminal superintendent candidate with a civil service appointment and admitted to the preparatory service for the higher service of the Berlin criminal police. He posted a video on YouTube in 2018. In it, he makes a fictitious phone call to the alleged manager at the cash register of a café and, under the pretext of an agreement, places orders without paying for them. The video of the police trainee received nationwide media coverage in December 2018 and sparked outrage. Because of this and various other misconduct, the police chief in Berlin dismissed the applicant, ordering immediate enforcement.

The 28th chamber of the administrative court has now rejected the urgent application filed against this. The dismissal was not objectionable because the police trainee’s conduct violated his core duties as a police officer. The police’s job, he said, is to prevent and solve crimes, not to promote alleged scams – even in the form of a skit. There could be no question of “artistic activity” protected by fundamental rights when advertising such an act on the Internet. The police had therefore been justified in taking the justified doubts as to the applicant’s character suitability as a reason to dismiss him.

An appeal against the decision may be lodged with the Berlin-Brandenburg Higher Administrative Court.

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