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Former prison officer admits relationship with prisoner and wilfully neglecting her duties


A former prison officer at HMP Guys Marsh has admitted having a relationship with a prisoner, which led her to break the law and wilfully neglect her duties over a period of four months.

Rachel Martin, aged 25 and from Salisbury, pleaded guilty today (27 October 2022) at Bournemouth Crown Court to eight counts of misconduct in public office and an offence of encouraging or assisting the unauthorised possession of a mobile phone by a prisoner.

During the period in question, Martin embarked on an emotional and intimate relationship with a prisoner knowing it contravened working practices. She regularly had telephone conversations with him, knowing that prisoners are not allowed to possess mobile phones.

She also arranged for high value designer clothes and footwear to be bought and delivered to the prison, supplied him with items of female underwear, encouraged another person to purchase phone credit for the prisoner, and neglected to report that she knew the prisoner had mobile phones and SD cards.

She further misconducted herself by receiving money that she knew had been organised or paid for by the prisoner she had formed a relationship with.

Anthony Johns, CPS Wessex Senior Crown Prosecutor, said: “The evidence in this case proved that there had been thousands of messages, videos and voice messages exchanged between Martin and the prisoner on an almost daily basis.

“After a thorough investigation by the police, we could show that not only were they in a relationship, but that Martin was receiving large payments into her bank account and that she clearly knew that there were unauthorised mobile devices in the prison.

“As a prison officer and person acting in public office, she was in an important position of trust. Martin would have known that her actions represented a clear breach of that trust, created a serious conflict of interest, and entirely compromised her position.

“People who act otherwise than in accordance with their duties in public office will be brought to justice.”

Martin will be sentenced at a later date.

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