Former TVP officer jailed for misconduct in public office
An ex-police officer who “abused his power” and “broke public trust” by pursuing women for sex after meeting them in the course of his duties has been jailed for three and a half years.
Oliver Perry-Smith was charged with misconduct in public office and computer misuse after he formed sexual relationships with several women over the course of four years. He met the women – who were all potential defendants, witnesses, or otherwise involved in police investigations – through the course of his duties.
More than once, he used police software to find out confidential information about them, such as checking a woman’s numberplate to find her name and address so he could visit her later that evening.
Reading Crown Court heard that many of these women were emotionally vulnerable at the time and felt an imbalance of power due to Perry-Smith’s position as a police officer; this was exacerbated by the fact that he would often visit them while on duty and in full police uniform.
Perry-Smith pleaded guilty to three counts of misconduct in public office and two counts of unauthorised access to computer material.
Senior Crown Prosecutor Charles White of the Crown Prosecution Service said: “Oliver Perry-Smith took advantage of his privileged position and access to police resources to pursue several women over a few years.
“He knowingly breached police policy when he made personal visits while on duty. He seemed to think that by lying to his superiors and using his duties as an excuse, he’d be immune to the consequences of his actions.
“Today’s sentence proves no one is above the law, including those meant to uphold it. Perry-Smith abused his power, broke public trust, and made many women feel uncomfortable or unsafe in his inappropriate pursuit of them. I hope today’s sentence brings those women a sense of justice.”