Dorset Police officers reprimanded for Bournemouth pitch invasion

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Fans swarm the pitch after Bournemouth beat Nottingham Forest 1-0
Image caption,
Bournemouth fans swarmed the pitch after the final whistle was blown

Three police officers have been reprimanded for taking part in a pitch invasion while off-duty and celebrating their team's promotion.

The Dorset Police officers were among fans who spilled onto AFC Bournemouth's turf at Vitality Stadium after the side secured a return to the Premier League.

The force said it had asked the officers to "reflect on their involvement" in the incident on 3 May.

Other staff have also been reminded about expected standards of behaviour.

Supporters were seen letting off flares and surrounding the players and coaches after the match against Nottingham Forest.

One of the officers involved is said to be a superintendent, The Sun newspaper reported.

Image source, PA Media
Image caption,
AFC Bournemouth celebrated being promoted back to the top flight

It is illegal for fans to go onto the playing area, without lawful authority or excuse, under the Football (Offences) Act 1991.

However, there have been a number of high profile pitch invasions in recent weeks.

Sheffield United's Billy Sharp was headbutted by Nottingham Forest fan Robert Biggs at the end of the Sky Bet Championship play-off semi-final second leg.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson's spokesman also called a pitch invasion at Manchester City's ground "concerning" after Aston Villa goalkeeper Robin Olsen was reportedly assaulted as home supporters celebrated.

A Dorset Police spokesperson confirmed the officers who went onto the pitch had been reported internally to the force's professional standards department.

The spokesperson added: "Three police officers were identified and were asked to reflect on their involvement.

"Following the game, a message was issued internally reminding all officers and staff of the high standards of behaviour expected of them, both in and out of work, and reiterating that no matter how exciting it is for their team to win promotion to the Premier League, they must not be involved in pitch invasions."

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