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Corrupt PC shared confidential intelligence with outside contact

Humberside PC sent information of briefings and emails and images related to crimes on more than one occasion

A former Humberside Police officer has been sentenced to six months imprisonment suspended for two years and 200 hours community service for misconduct in public office following an investigation by Humberside Police DPS and the IOPC..

PC Kate Elston, who was based in Grimsby, passed information and intelligence to a member of the public during the course of her duties between February 2019 and September 2020.

Records show that PC Elston was on duty during that period and had access to confidential police information and intelligence, which she subsequently shared without any policing purpose.

In August 2020 she sent an image of her computer terminal showing a confidential briefing sheet via WhatsApp to a member of the public.

In addition, evidence identified there were further occasions whereby PC Elston supplied confidential police information to the same member of the public, which included emails and images related to crimes she and other officers had attended.

PC Elston was arrested at Grimsby Police Station on 5 October 2020 for corrupt or other improper exercise of police powers and privileges.

She was charged with misconduct in public office in December 2021.

Detective Superintendent Matt Baldwin, head of the force’s Professional Standards Department, said: “This was a troubling case where highly confidential information was being shared outside of our organisation.

“Breaches of this nature are always viewed with the utmost seriousness as the impact they can have on investigations can be significant."

IOPC Director of Major Investigations Steve Noonan said: “Elston’s behaviour was audacious, corrupt and criminal. Her actions were a complete betrayal of the public’s trust and have no place in policing.

“The evidence we have seen points towards this being an isolated case of police corruption but the outcome sends a clear message to any officer who conducts themselves in such a way – they face serious consequences and will be held to account.”

“Forces have a key role to play in tackling issues like this and I would like to thank the team at Humberside Police for their professionalism and thorough investigation that has ultimately led to the sentencing today.”

During the investigation PC Elston was subject to an accelerated misconduct process but she resigned before the hearing. It found that she would have been dismissed without notice had she not done so.

She has also been placed on the barred list. 

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