Policeman who had sexual relationship with vulnerable rape victim is jailed for three years

A police constable from a village near Wigan, who formed a secret sexual relationship with a vulnerable rape victim and later tried to thwart a police raid on her home, has been jailed for three years.

By Lynda Roughley
Monday, 4th April 2022, 2:59 pm
Updated Monday, 4th April 2022, 3:00 pm

A judge told Simon Rose that he had let down his colleagues and the general public.

“You have breached not only the trust of your immediate colleagues, people who saw you as a friend, but the trust the public expect and are entitled to have in police officers,” said Judge David Swinnerton.

“Police officers behaving like you did damages trust in the whole police service and it is to the detriment of every single police officer and society as a whole,” he added.

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PC Simon Rose

Judge Swinnerton told Rose, who had been an officer with Greater Manchester Police since 2007, that victims of sexual abuse feel under great pressure about reporting matters to the authorities.

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“It is wholly unacceptable if one of those factors might be them subsequently being targeted by a predatory police officer.”

Rose, of Burnside in the village of Parbold, had been convicted of misconduct in public office and attempting to pervert the course of justice after a nine-day trial in January. A jury took just two hours and 20 minutes to find him guilty.

“You took advantage of vulnerable victim by forming a sexual relationship with her,” said Judge Swinnerton.

He added that 48-year-old Rose had admitted in cross-examination that forming a sexual or emotional relationship with such a victim was entirely wrong.

“But knowing it, that is precisely the sort of relationship you entered into,” said the judge.

The judge pointed out that the defendant had carried out the clandestine relationship “behind your partner’s back and behind your colleagues’ backs.”

Liverpool Crown Court heard that when a search warrant for firearms was to be executed at her home Rose, who genuinely believed it was a fruitless mission, asked colleagues to ignore anything they might find.

Judge Swinnerton said he accepted his motivation was to cover up his “own shameful secret.”

But he added that Rose “had been prepared to comprise his colleagues” to prevent it coming out.

Vanessa Thomson, prosecuting, said Rose had been attached to the Salford division of GMP and was “a highly respected, outgoing police officer.

He met the woman in May 2012 in his role as a specially trained officer involved in dealing with rape and sexual assault allegations. She alleged she had been raped at knifepoint after being taken away in a vehicle by two men though the case later did not proceed.

Their relationship endured for a number of years and was hidden from his colleagues until October 2019 when her name came under the spotlight in respect of a lawful execution of a search warrant at her home, said Miss Thomson.

After his behaviour came to light and the woman was interviewed she told how their relationship became sexual a few months after their first meeting and they had sex on three or four occasions.

She said that they had had exchanged sexual message and spoken about their sexual fantasies and she sent him explicit photographs of herself. He repeatedly told her to delete their messages and keep their relationship quiet.

The woman told how she had had strong feelings for Rose and that he had discussed them being together even though he had a partner. When she embarked on a new relationship her relationship with Rose turned to close friendship which lasted for a number of years.

Miss Thomson said that by 2019 Rose was based at Swinton police station and his role included executing search warrants. One of the addresses involved the woman’s home, though there was no suggestion she was involved in criminality.

He repeatedly spoke to a colleague saying it must be a mistake and to “be decent with her”.

On October 3 he went with two colleagues to execute the warrant and en route admitted he was on friendly terms with the woman. He claimed that the friendship could have been regarded as "flirty’” but it was never sexual.

As they got nearer he said he was worried that something would be recovered from her home which would get him sacked. He became increasingly anxious and asked his colleagues to overlook any evidence they found and they consequently abandoned executing the warrant that day.

In an impact statement today the victim how they had a close emotional relationship after their initial sexual encounters and when he suddenly ended all contact she did not know what she had done wrong and felt used and upset.

She said the lies he had told during the trial “were horrible. I knew they were wrong.”

The woman also said that she has been left with sleep problems and panic attacks and her relationship with her partner and children has been adversely affected.

Sarah Barlow, defending, said that the couple’s relationship had been “a genuine friendship” but she did not dispute the victim’s distress.

In relation to the search warrant he did not believe that there were any firearms or ammunition at her home and realised it was “a joey address…He was acting very much in panic trying to save his own skin, thinking of his own job.”

The court heard that he has lost his relationship with his partner as well as his job.

And following conviction, the police watchdog said Rose would now face disciplinary proceedings arranged by the force.

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