A residential child care worker from Denbighshire has been removed from the Register of Social Care Workers after a Social Care Wales hearing found his fitness to practise was currently impaired because of serious misconduct.
Daniel Percival was working in a children’s home in Denbighshire when he was accused of having an inappropriate sexually-motivated relationship with a young person in his care.
The hearing was told that in May 2019 Mr Percival touched a young person in his care in a sexually motivated way while travelling in a car and allowed the young person to do the same to him.
The hearing was also told that Mr Percival made inappropriate comments and behaved inappropriately towards the young person on other occasions.
Appearing before the panel, Mr Percival disputed the accusations but accepted that, with the benefit of hindsight, some of his interactions with the young person were inappropriate.
After considering the evidence, the panel found the charges proved and concluded that Mr Percival acted in a way that breached the trust placed in him as a professional and showed a lack of integrity.
The panel therefore decided that Mr Percival’s fitness to practise was currently impaired because of serious misconduct.
The panel explained its decision, telling Mr Percival: “Our factual findings amount to a determination that you engaged in inappropriate sexual contact with a vulnerable 14-year old girl who was in your professional care.
“This amounts to a breach of the trust that had been placed in you as a professional. It is likely to have aggravated the difficulties that the young person already suffered.
“We have decided that it amounted to a breach of a core principle of social care and showed a lack of professional integrity. It risked undermining public confidence in social care and the care afforded to children within children's homes in particular.
“We have concluded that you present a risk to individuals using services because of the potential for you to overstep professional boundaries in the future.”
The panel decided to remove Mr Percival from the Register, saying: “In our view it is proportionate to the seriousness of the misconduct. We are satisfied that no lesser disposal would be adequate to protect the public.”
The three-day remote hearing took place over Zoom from 16 to 18 November 2020.