February 2019

Sentence for ‘disgraced’ cop who tracked girl, 14, in Cornwall on Snapchat for sex

A Ministry of Defence police officer who has been jailed for having sex with a 14-year-old girl from Cornwall has been branded a disgrace to his family and the organisation he was employed by.

38-year-old Peter Drummond was convicted by a jury at Truro Crown Court of three counts of sexual activity with a child.

Drummond made two separate brief trips to Cornwall from his home in West View Terrace, Three Mile Cross, Berkshire, in October and November 2017.

He tracked down the vulnerable victim’s address using the maps feature on popular app Snapchat and proceeded to have sex with her on both occasions.

On his first visit he entered through an unlocked back gate and on the second he climbed in through the girl’s bedroom window while her step father was also in the house.

It took a jury just three hours to convict him of the three sexual activity with a child charges, however he was cleared of three counts of rape.

Drummond denied the charges throughout but did admit to having ‘consensual’ sex with the girl, saying that he had no reason to believe she was under the legal age of consent.

Drummond met the victim on a Kik internet chatroom before their conversations moved to Instagram, Skype and Snapchat.

Throughout the trial the court heard how Drummond’s DNA was found in the victim’s room and that he had made a £30 bank transfer into her account so that she could buy shoes. He was also clocked on his way to Cornwall by automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) cameras.

When police arrived to arrest Drummond he didn’t immediately come down to greet officers, time that he used to quickly reset his phone and erase its history.

A victim personal statement read to the court heard how the victim had to move schools because of bullying she received once the rumour had spread around her school.

She describes feeling broken and even on one occasion attempting to take her life.

The girl’s family is also said to have suffered as a consequence of Drummond’s offending, with her mum unable to work night shifts in order to be with her daughter and the her stepfather leaving the family as a result of the stress associated with the proceedings.

The mother said that it has left her daughter “utterly destroyed”.

Defending Drummond, Kaja Reiff Musgrove said there was nothing in his background to suggest any other offending or sexual interest in children.

She said: “Mr Drummond is a man of extreme good character and his has been an extreme fall from grace. He has a responsible job with the MoD police and has lost his employment and his career.

“He is not going to be popular among inmates and his period in custody will be a significant greater punishment.”

Sentencing Drummond, Judge Simon Carr said the circumstances are “as shocking as they are depressing”.

He said: “You were a 37-year-old man with a responsible job. You chose to socialise in a variety of chatrooms where you conceded in your evidence you were as likely to meet teenagers as adults.

“You met the victim, a 14-year-old girl, with significant psychological problems and she opened up to you that she was unhappy and had been self-harming.

“The action of any decent human being was to get her help or to try and contact her parents but you are not a decent human being. You exploited your position as you had found someone you could manipulate.

“You pretended to show care and have her interests at heart but the way you met her showed you were interested in her sexually.

“You drove five hours and went into her house when you knew her parents were not present. You were in her house for around one and a half hours. Once you’d had sex with her you didn’t comfort her, you left her and drove home to be with your family.

“One would have thought your moral compass would have said this must never happen again but you continued your communication with her and next time you visited you took a condom as sex was the only thing on your mind.

“You got in this time through the window because her stepfather was in the house. I suspect this was part of the thrill.

“The effect on the victim has been devastating. She has been bullied and forced to leave her school. The effect has not just been on her but her mother. Her stepfather had to come to terms with the fact he’d been present while you were with the victim and his relationship with the girl’s mother broke down.

“There was an element of planning and grooming and you knew she was underage, or at least would have soon from the beginning.”

Drummond was jailed for eight years and told he must sign the sex offenders’ register for life.