Avon and Somerset police officer sacked after using force database to look up her date

The misconduct hearing took place at Avon and Somerset police headquarters in Portishead. Credit: ITV West Country

An Avon and Somerset police officer has been sacked after using force IT systems to check out a potential date.

The force said PC Teresa Lines also made a false entry in her notebook about her reasons for going to the man’s house while on duty.

She faced a misconduct hearing at police headquarters in Portishead, where she was accused of revealing confidential details about him to staff and making a false allegation against the person who reported her for “computer misuse”.

PC Lines, who was based at Somerton and Yeovil police stations, was dismissed without notice following the hearing.

PC Teresa Lines was based at Yeovil and Somerton police stations before her dismissal for gross misconduct. Credit: ITV West Country

In a statement, Avon and Somerset Police said: "PC Teresa Lines misused police systems by checking details on a man she intended to go on a date with and/or start a relationship with.

"PC Lines also made a false entry into her pocket notebook about her reasons to attend the man’s house, and made a false allegation around the motivation of the person who reported her for the computer misuse."

Supt Jane Wigmore, head of Professional Standards, said: "Legitimacy is vital to maintaining public confidence and we expect all officers and staff to abide by a strict data protection policy when it comes to the use of police systems and accessing both sensitive and confidential information.

"PC Lines’ actions were a clear breach of this policy and there was no policing purpose for her to access the information she did.

"PC Lines went onto compound this lack of judgement with a false allegation relating to the person who reported this breach and a false entry in her pocket notebook – all in an attempt to conceal her actions.

"It is important officers and staff maintain professional boundaries, including with members of the public, and PC Lines failed to do that.

"The misconduct hearing panel, led by an independent Legally Qualified Chair, have listened to all the evidence and found allegations of gross misconduct were proven and have decided the sanction should be dismissal without notice."