Overweight cop told to ‘stop drinking gallons of Coca-Cola’ wins £10,000 payout

A detective has won a £10,000 payout after a colleague "humiliated" her by suggesting she stopped "drinking gallons of coke".

Overweight Detective Constable Kerry Moth, 46, attributes her size to medication for fibromyalgia, a condition that leads to widespread pain and extreme tiredness.

She lodged a complaint when another detective implied her diet was to blame.

An employment tribunal in Exeter heard Detective Sergeant Daryl Marvelly say that if DC Moth was seen by colleagues to make more of an effort to get fitter, they would respect her more.

Fibromyalgia is a chronic condition causing widespread pain and fatigue, which has forced DC Moth to take around 76 days off every year for the past decade.

It was ruled in March that the comments about DC Moth's fizzy drink habit were discriminatory on the grounds of disability, MailOnline reports.

Police lawyer Mark Ley-Morgan said Devon and Cornwall Police was not uncaring towards DC Moth and had even made a lot of adjustments for the employee.

DC Moth told DS Marvelly over lunch at Barnstaple police station in July 2018 over that she was "fed up" with people assuming her weight made fibromyalgia worse.

The tribunal heard that despite DS Marvelly seeing her regularly drink "gallons of Coca Cola", they were only zero calorie and decaffeinated versions of the beverage.

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Professor John Harrison from the force's Occupational Health department delivered a report in February 2019, detailing on how fibromyalgia impacted DC Moth's ability to work.

He said DC Moth could protect herself if a job turned violent and could also support a colleague but what her condition did restrict her from was a fitness test.

Because of this she could not undergo officer safety training but still hoped to eventually be promoted to a sergeant

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Employment tribunal judge, Alastair Smail who was tasked with reaching a verdict on the case said DS Marvelly acted in good faith but his comments "did have the effect of humiliating her".

He note the direct reference to her guzzling gallons of Coca-Cola carried an unprofessional tone and so the judge concluded DC Moth was "harassed" by the comments.

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At the tribunal on Monday, DC Moth, who is still employed by Devon and Cornwall Police, cried and said: "I just want to do my job."

According to MailOnline, Judge Alastair Smail said DS Marvelly's comments were inappropriate for the workplace and unfortunately had an upsetting effect.

The judge said £10,000 in compensation was for injury to feelings and also made a series of recommendations so DC Moth can continue to excel in her duties.

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