Helicopter sex film police crew cleared of misconduct

Image source, PA
Image caption, The cleared men clockwise from top left: Matthew Lucas, Lee Walls, Malcolm Reeves and Matthew Loosemore

Four members of a police helicopter crew accused of filming naked sunbathers and a couple having sex have been cleared of misconduct charges.

South Yorkshire Police officers Matthew Lucas, 42 and Lee Walls, 47, and pilots Matthew Loosemore, 45 and Malcolm Reeves, 64, were charged after another officer shot the footage.

They were acquitted following a three week trial at Sheffield Crown Court.

PC Adrian Pogmore, 50, had admitted misconduct in a public office.

During the trial, the court heard a couple sitting naked by a caravan were filmed in July 2008, while the aircraft also filmed a garden where a woman was sunbathing naked with her daughters in 2007.

The footage also showed a couple having sex on their patio in July 2008 and at one point, the naked woman waved at the aircraft.

Image source, PA
Image caption, Adrian Pogmore had admitted four charges of misconduct

The defendants had blamed Pogmore, from Whiston in Rotherham, for the filming.

They insisted they were not aware what he was filming and he was the only person who was present on each of the four occasions the recordings were made.

Pogmore was described by the prosecution as "a swinging and sex-obsessed air observer" who knew the couple he filmed having sex.

All of the people filmed by Pogmore, with the exception of the couple having sex, gave statements saying they felt their privacy had been invaded.

Mr Reeves, from Knaresborough, North Yorkshire, had denied two counts of misconduct in a public office and Mr Loosemore, of Auckley, Doncaster, denied one count.

Mr Walls, from Aston, Sheffield, denied one count while Mr Lucas, from Chapeltown, Sheffield, also denied three counts.

Pogmore, who was sacked by the force in 2015 following an internal misconduct investigation, will be sentenced on Tuesday.

Following the case, a spokesman for South Yorkshire Police said: "Notwithstanding today's verdicts concerning the four defendants who were acquitted, we will now continue with misconduct proceedings internally against the other South Yorkshire Police officers."

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