Bristol

Peter Lower case: Policeman who assaulted escort sentenced

Sgt Peter Lower Image copyright PA
Image caption Peter Lower was cleared of three charges of rape at his trial

A policeman who physically assaulted a sex worker he was having an affair with has been sentenced to 150 hours of community service.

Peter Lower kicked the 19 year-old in the stomach after losing his temper.

Lower was sentenced at Taunton Crown Court for causing actual bodily harm to the escort.

The married father of two was sacked from his job as a sergeant with Avon and Somerset Police earlier this month over the November 2009 attack.

At the conclusion of his trial at Bristol Crown Court in September, Lower was cleared of three charges of rape, one charge of assault by penetration, one charge of sexual assault, two charges of assault occasioning actual bodily harm and a single charge of false imprisonment.

'Very nasty'

At Friday's sentencing hearing, his defence said in mitigation that while Lower "may lack moral backbone, moral fibre and was a weak-willed individual", he felt ashamed at what he had done.

The court also heard that Lower, formerly of Banwell, North Somerset, was going through divorce and had lost his career, after being in the police force for over 20 years.

Sentencing him, Judge Richard Bromilow said he was "troubled" by the escort girl's "obvious vulnerability".

He told Lower: "You kicked her intentionally in the stomach which was bound to cause her hurt.

"It did not need medical attention, but it was plainly a very nasty incident."

He added that it was difficult to measure the effect of the assault, which happened a long time ago.

"You have accepted the relationship was dysfunctional and you have paid heavily for it," the judge said.

"You have lost two things that are very important to you: your character and your family."

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