Police officer denies raping woman three times while on duty

Police Sergeant David Stansbury outside Bristol Crown Court. Credit: Ben Birchall/PA

A police officer has pleaded not guilty to three counts of rape while on duty.

Sergeant David Stansbury appeared at Bristol Crown Court on Wednesday 10 May accused of raping a woman aged 16 or over.

The 42-year-old is alleged to have raped the woman in Plymouth, Devon, in 2009.

Stansbury, who wore a face mask as he arrived at and left the court building, pleaded not guilty to the three charges against him.

The officer, dressed in a black suit, white shirt and blue tie, also spoke to confirm his name and date of birth to the court.

Judge Michael Longman told the defendant: “This case is adjourned for trial.

“That will take place on 18 March next year. You must attend your trial. If you do not do so, that would be an offence punishable by imprisonment and you might find that the trial continues in your absence.

“You must continue to help your legal representatives. There will be a further hearing in the middle of September, which you are required to attend.”

Asked if he understood what had been said, Stansbury replied: “I do.”

Devon and Cornwall Police previously said the charges, which were reported to the force in September 2020, related to alleged incidents in Plymouth in 2009 while Stansbury was on duty.

The defendant, of Ilminster in Somerset, was an officer with Devon and Cornwall Police between 2009 and 2011.

He now serves with Hertfordshire Police but is suspended from duty.

Stansbury, who was released on unconditional bail, is next due to appear at Bristol Crown Court in September.