Former police officer handed 18-month community order for making indecent photographs of children
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A former North Yorkshire Police officer who pleaded guilty to making indecent images of children has been handed an 18-month community order.
Christopher Douglas Groom, aged 41, of Main Street, Claxton, Malton, was dealt with at Leeds Magistrates’ Court today (14 June 2022).
The ex-Hambleton and Richmondshire response officer admitted making 8,707 Category C indecent photographs of children between 3 December 2014 and 14 November 2021.
Category C includes lower-level indecent images of children, with Category B and Category A amounting to more serious offences.
The defendant, who has been placed on the Register of Sex Offenders for five years, made subject of a Sexual Harm Prevention Order, must complete 30 rehabilitation days with Safer Lives and do 150 hours of unpaid work, has been suspended from duty since his arrest on 16 December 2021.
An Accelerated Misconduct Hearing (AMH) will now be considered by the Chief Constable and the Professional Standards Department.
Groom resigned from North Yorkshire ahead of his first court appearance on 18 May.
Deputy Chief Constable Mabs Hussain said:
“North Yorkshire Police demands the highest level of integrity from our officers and staff.
“This is essential to ensure the communities we are proud to serve have complete trust in their police service.
“The abhorrent and criminal actions of Groom have betrayed that public trust and he has betrayed North Yorkshire Police.”
Detective Sergeant Steve Alderson, of the Online Abuse and Exploitation Team, said:
“From our investigation, including an extensive digital forensic examination of devices used exclusively by the defendant, we were able to establish beyond any doubt that Christopher Douglas Groom had actively sought out and viewed a significant number of child sexual abuse images.
“We were able to recover 8,707 Category C indecent photographs of children which were made between December 2014 and November 2021.
“There were no other offences identified during the investigation and all safeguarding efforts have been made to mitigate potential risks to young people.”
DS Alderson added:
“The fact that Groom was a serving North Yorkshire Police officer made no difference to how we conducted the investigation.
“He was treated the same as any other member of the public who become subject to a criminal inquiry and court proceedings.
“This case shows the determination of North Yorkshire Police to secure justice against those involved in indecent images of children offences, no matter who they are.”
Reporting and seeking help about online sexual abuse
Please contact North Yorkshire Police on 101. If you are in immediate danger, always dial 999 for an emergency response
Marie Collins Foundation - mariecollinsfoundation.org.uk – support for children and young people who have been abused via the internet and mobile technologies
Stop it Now! – www.stopitnow.org.uk – Helpline 0808 1000 900 – confidential help and support for people who concerned about their or someone else’s thoughts and behaviour towards children
Victims who would prefer not to go direct to the police and are not in immediate danger, can contact Bridge House, North Yorkshire’s Sexual Assault Referral Centre (SARC), on 0330 223 0362, email [email protected] or go to www.bridgehousesarc.org/
NSPCC Helplines: Anyone concerned about a child can contact the NSPCC Helpline for advice on 0808 8005000; Adult victims of non-recent sexual abuse can also get in touch for support; Childline is available for young people on 0800 1111 or at www.childline.org.uk