He pursued vulnerable women
A Devon and Cornwall Police officer has been dismissed without notice at a misconduct hearing by the force, following an Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) investigation.
PC J, whom the disciplinary panel decided should not be named, was alleged to have obtained the contact details of two vulnerable women through police computer systems and used his position to pursue inappropriate relationships with them.
The officer messaged both women in 2018 using his personal device after they reported crimes to Devon and Cornwall Police. He then exchanged a considerable number of sexually explicit images and messages with one of the women.
At the end of our investigation in May 2019, the force agreed with the IOPC's view that the officer had a case to answer for gross misconduct. A Devon and Cornwall Police disciplinary hearing with a legally-qualified independent chair found the allegations against the officer proven. On 5 November, the disciplinary panel sacked him.
IOPC regional director Catrin Evans said: “The officer abused his position of trust to pursue an improper emotional relationship with two vulnerable members of the public who had reported crimes. Not only did he fail to show sufficient regard for the professional boundaries he must observe in his role as an officer but he also failed to fulfil his public duty by carrying out investigations into the crimes reported.”
A referral was made to the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) which decided not to charge the officer with any criminal offence.
The officer will now be placed on the barred list of former officers who cannot work for the police service in the future.