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Ipswich: Police investigator resigns after admitting illegally accessing data

PUBLISHED: 11:56 05 February 2014 | UPDATED: 11:56 05 February 2014

The  Police Investigation Centre at Martlesham Heath where Dunn worked

The Police Investigation Centre at Martlesham Heath where Dunn worked

Archant

A Suffolk police investigator on trial for illegally accessing his male lover’s details on the constabulary’s computer system has changed his plea to admit the charges.

Thomas Dunn, of Rose Lane, Ipswich, had denied 10 counts of obtaining personal data which included details on eight people, including two of his boyfriends and a man whose name was on a list headed ‘rent boys’.

The accusations also included looking up information on a car parked near his former home in Wordsell Close, Ipswich.

However, on the second day of his Norwich Crown Court trial Dunn changed his plea to guilty in relation to the two charges involving a man he had been in a relationship with.

The remaining eight allegations will not be pursued.

As a result Dunn was given a conditional discharge and has resigned from Suffolk Constabulary.

After the case ended investigating officer Detective Inspector Jeff Yaxley said: “The highest level 
of professionalism and moral standards are rightly demanded of any member of the police service but unfortunately Dunn has not displayed them.

“Suffolk Constabulary treats data protection breaches very seriously and procedures are in place to ensure that misuse of our computer systems is highlighted so that action can be taken.”

At the opening of Dunn’s trial prosecutor David Wilson said in October 2012 Suffolk and Norfolk’s joint anti-corruption unit was alerted after Dunn had looked up the number plates of two vehicles related to a large-scale investigation in May and October 2012.

However, no intelligence had been submitted by him in relation to the vehicles.

After Dunn was asked about accessing the data, a full audit of his work was carried out.

Mr Wilson said: “When further checks were made what became clear was that Mr Dunn was submitting requests and looking up on the crime information system pieces of information that really appeared to relate to his personal life rather than any policing purpose.”

The offences Dunn admitted occurred on June 30, 2012, and October 8, 2012, when Dunn accessed the details of a boyfriend.

The man had told him that he had been in trouble with the police in his youth and Dunn was said to have wanted to check the man’s background.

Dunn has also been accused of checking the background of another man he had a casual sexual relationship with, and a third person who was allegedly on a list he compiled headed ‘rent boys’.

However, Dunn did not plead guilty to either of these charges.

Dunn had started working for Suffolk Constabulary in 2006 and had been an investigator since 2009.

He was arrested on January 30 last year.

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