Former Norfolk police officer jailed over relationship with 14-year-old
- Credit: Brittany Woodman, Archant Norfolk.
A former Norfolk police officer took pictures on his mobile phone of sexual acts with a 14-year-old boy he started a relationship with after meeting online, a court has heard.
Neal Porter, 32, a former police response officer based at Wymondham in South Norfolk, was jailed for two years after the court heard how he met the victim on a social networking app before the pair started a sexual relationship.
Norwich Crown Court heard the victim, who had said he was nearly 18, and Porter kissed after they met before things developed and they became involved in intimate acts.
Sean Sullivan, prosecuting, said Porter took pictures of the pair involved in sex acts which was shared between the two of them, including a video sent by Porter to the teenager.
Mr Sullivan said the victim went onto tell a teacher about what had happened and Porter was arrested.
He was found to have a total of 18 indecent images on a mobile phone.
Porter said he was told by the victim that he was coming up to his 18th birthday at the time and had no reason to disbelieve him.
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The court heard that the video and images were only shared between Porter and the victim and that Porter was not charged with any contact sexual offences.
Porter, of William Close, Watton, appeared at court to be sentenced on Thursday (November 4) having previously admitted taking an indecent image of a child, distributing an image of a child and three counts of making an indecent image of a child between June 2020 and October 2020.
Jailing Porter for two years, Judge Anthony Bate recognised it was an "unusual" case but said the defendant had been a "serving police officer in this county at the time".
Judge Bate said the offences were "so serious that only immediate imprisonment can be justified for it."
Porter was also made the subject of a sexual harm prevention order (SHPO) for 10 years and must also sign on the sex offenders register for 10 years.
Andrew Oliver, mitigating, said it was a "rather unusual and unique case".
He said Porter was told by the victim he would be 18 in a week or so and had seen evidence, on social media, of the victim training as an air steward.
Mr Oliver said Porter had "genuinely believed" the victim was 18 and that he was taking a video of someone he thought was that age.
He said the pictures taken were "in the context of these consensual sexual acts" and added the images were only ever intended for Porter and the victim and were not shared more widely.
Mr Oliver said Porter, who had been a serving Norfolk Police officer, lost both his home and his job after being convicted of these offences.
He said the defendant was "devastated" to be in court and "never thought he would be facing today" but was sorry for the harm he had caused.
It comes after another former Norfolk police officer, George Ince, was jailed last month after he admitted the distribution of indecent images ranging from six to 17 between May 2019 and July 2020.
Ince, of Kingfisher Close, Stalham, was jailed for 16 months by Judge Bate who said the former officer's conduct was “appalling” and involved indecent images of the “gravest kind”.
The court heard Ince was also involved in chats on an internet chat site including discussion about the rape of a teenager and young girls being tied up.
Speaking after Porter's sentencing, Norfolk's chief constable Paul Sanford said it was “incredibly rare” to have one case like this let alone two at the same time but stressed that the Ince and Porter cases were not linked.
He said: "Everyone in the Constabulary is sickened by the actions of both Ince and Porter.
“They have absolutely undermined all the values we stand for. They have no place in the police and are a discredit to the service.
“As soon as the cases came in the absolute focus was on getting justice.”