(5 May) A former police officer, who lost his job after using his boss’s computer to wipe a “stupid” domestic violence job, has been sentenced for assaulting a 17-year-old girl.
Geoffrey Steven Edkins, of Hamlyn Terrace, pleaded guilty to one count of common assault on the first day of his hearing in March, with two counts of sexual touching withdrawn and dismissed.
The 54-year-old was sentenced in Wyong Local Court on Tuesday to an 18-month community corrections order (CCO).
Conditions of the CCO include that he be supervised by a community corrections officer at Wyong Community Corrections District Office, that he perform 50 hours of community service work and abstain from alcohol for the duration of the order.
An agreed set of police facts, tendered in court, states Edkins was holding a birthday party at his house in March last year where numerous family and friends were in attendance.
The victim, who was not related to Edkins, was lying on a lounge in the downstairs living room when he “walked around the room apparently intoxicated”.
The victim asked for a blanket which he retrieved from another room.
“The offender walked over to the lounge and draped the blanket over [her],” the facts read.
“The offender proceeded to tuck the blanket in around [her] body and in doing so placed his hand down inside her pyjama pants and inside her underpants. His bare hand touched the bare skin of her buttocks. [She] immediately flinched and moved.”
About 10 minutes later she went upstairs and told her friends “Geoff touched my butt … Geoff touched me.”
The matter was reported to Wyong Police Station two days later.
At 7.24pm on March 27, 2020, police attended Edkins’ home and he was cautioned.
The facts state he asked officers “are you sure you’ve got the right person? I don’t know anyone by the name of [the victim]”.
He was taken to Wyong Police Station where he was charged with two counts of sexual touching and common assault.
The two sexual touching offences were withdrawn and dismissed in March when he pleaded guilty to common assault.
It comes after the former Senior Constable lost his job after he was charged with being negligent in the execution of his duty and three counts of accessing or modifying restricted data.
The charges stemmed from a domestic violence incident he was called to at Bateau Bay in October 2015, in which a teenage girl allegedly kicked her mother in the face and threatened her sister with a knife before leaving the house.
The girl also allegedly threatened to come back and damage the house but because she was a minor and “would only receive a caution” Edkins told his boss there was no point taking any further action.
He then went out of his way to avoid following it up until one of his bosses walked away from his desk, leaving his computer logged on.
Edkins then “verified” the event on that computer so it would not be subject to further review.
He pleaded guilty in Gosford Local Court in 2016 where his negligent duty charge was proved but with no conviction recorded and he was put on a two-year good behaviour bond.
One accessing restricted data charge was withdrawn and dismissed while another was again proven but with no conviction.
For the “verifying” the event charge he was convicted but without penalty.
He successfully appealed that conviction in Gosford District Court where a Judge said while the offence was not “trivial” he accepted it was “spur of the moment, foolish attempt” to “get his sergeant off his back.
The judge also said because Edkins’ future as an officer was over, it would be highly unlikely he would be in a position to reoffend.
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