A POLICE officer from Corringham who used the national police database to access confidential information for a friend has appeared in court.
Former constable and neighbourhood officer Marc Clifford has resigned from his job and been given a suspended jail sentence for passing information to a burglary victim about a suspect.
Chelmsford Crown Court heard Clifford, 27, had been in a relationship with a woman called Jodean Tewma and remained friends with the family reports the Thurrock Gazette.
They were heavily involved in motocross racing and were victims of a break-in in 2010 when three bikes, including a family heirloom and a quad bike worth thousands of pounds, were stolen.
But the family became frustrated the police investigation was going nowhere.
In June 2010 Jamie Tewma, 26, Jodean’s brother, turned to Clifford for information.
A record of text messages from Clifford to Jamie Tewma included one which read: “Leave it with me mate, anything I give you must be burnt. I will get as much info as I can”.
The next day Clifford texted “got what you need” and “had to pull some strings for this”.
A third text from Clifford added: “Dropped it off at your mum’s. Make sure you didn’t get it from me. Photo, address and some info written down for you.”
Prosecuting, Chris McCann told the court police became suspicious of Clifford and began investigating him in May 2011.
They eventually raided Jamie Tewma’s home where they found a photo of a suspect for the burglary with Clifford’s fingerprints on it. Mr McCann told the court there was no suggestion the information had been or was going to be used for a revenge attack.
Clifford, of the Sorrells, Corringham, admitted misconduct in a public office while Jamie Tewma of Mill Lane, Fobbing, admitted aiding and abetting misconduct in a public office.
Both were given five-month jail terms suspended for 18 months and were ordered to carry out 120 hours of unpaid work.
Sentencing the pair at Chelmsford Crown Court, Judge Christopher Ball QC said Clifford had already paid a high price by losing the job in which he was “highly valued” and in which he had “performed so well”