A former police inspector who stood to be South Yorkshire’s crime commissioner is to stand trial on a charge of assault.
Jack Clarkson, who became one of Sheffield’s first UKIP councillors and then the local party’s leader in May 2014, ‘suspended himself’ from office as a Sheffield Council Stocksbridge and Upper Don councillor in August.
At the time the suspension was confirmed by the city council but it did not comment on the reasons and a spokesman for Sheffield UKIP said he had taken a ‘step back for the moment’ as he was ‘going through some personal problems’.
South Yorkshire Police have now confirmed to The Star that the former candidate for the South Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner post is to appear at Sheffield Magistrates’ Court over the alleged offence later this year.
Mr Clarkson previously worked for South Yorkshire Police in Sheffield, Rotherham, Ecclesfield, Deepcar, Hillsborough and Doncaster for more than 30 years. He retired as an inspector at Deepcar in 2006.
He is currently the Mayor of Stocksbridge and a councillor for East Ward, Deepcar, on the town’s council.
In October 2014, he stood against eventual winner Labour’s Rev Dr Alan Billings for the role of crime commissioner in a by-election triggered by the resignation of Shaun Wright after the Rotherham grooming scandal broke.
Mr Clarkson came second in the £1.6 million by-election, with just under 32 per cent of the vote, and was supported by UKIP leader Nigel Farage during his campaign.
In election pledges he promised to restore public confidence in the crisis-hit force.
Mr Clarkson said on Twitter during his campaign: “I want to re-establish public trust and confidence. We need strong leadership and a new culture where crime is investigated.”
He also said: “I want to build a South Yorkshire Police force that is proud to put on the uniform and serve the public, the same way I did for 30 years.”
Mr Clarkson, who was also a member of various Sheffield Council committees before his suspension, could not be reached for comment.