Northumbria Police officer who stalked ex and abused police computers remains suspended on full pay

Northumbria Police headquarters on Middle Engine Lane in Wallsend
Northumbria Police headquarters on Middle Engine Lane in Wallsend -Credit:MDM

An obsessive cop who admitted subjecting his ex to a terrifying campaign of stalking is still suspended from work on full pay.

Jonathan Waugh also misused the force's computer system hundreds of times to look for information about his former-girlfriend, and others, a court was told. Waugh was handed a suspended prison sentence earlier this week after pleading guilty to offences of stalking and computer misuse.

The 49-year-old now remains suspended from his job with Northumbria Police as he awaits the outcome of police misconduct proceedings. National regulations dictate that all police officers suspended from duty while misconduct investigations are carried out continue to receive full pay, and Northumbria Police, as with any other force, has no say on the matter.

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Det Supt Donna Rose, who is head of the force's Professional Standards Department, today said Waugh's actions were "completely unacceptable".

“Firstly, I want to recognise the bravery of the victim in coming forward, which meant this individual has now been brought to justice," she said. “The officer was suspended from duty when concerns were raised and a thorough investigation was carried out.

“A file was submitted to the Crown Prosecution Service and they were subsequently charged with offences, for which they have now been sentenced. Their actions were completely unacceptable and are in no way representative of the overwhelming majority of officers, staff and volunteers at Northumbria Police who come to work to make a positive difference to people’s lives.

“As a force, we have made it very clear that when someone falls below the standards expected and which they made a commitment to uphold we will take appropriate action. I can confirm misconduct proceedings are also being progressed in relation to the officer who remains suspended from duty.”

Waugh's victim ended the two-year relationship she had with the cop in May 2023 after noticing what she described as "red flags" of his jealous and controlling behaviour, Teesside Crown Court heard. But Waugh, from Blyth, refused to accept that things were over, and for a period of around two weeks he sent her a number of messages, and turned up at her home uninvited. On one occasion he barged into her house and refused to leave, the court was told.

A neighbour also told the woman she had seen Waugh looking through her garden fence, on June 12 2023. After the victim reported Waugh to police it was discovered he had been using police computers to illegally look up information about the woman, her family and his own family. He had also searched for himself, the court was told.

Waugh, of Ponteland Square, Blyth, pleaded guilty to one charge of stalking and six of computer misuse offences. In sentencing him to a total of 28 weeks in prison sentenced for 18 months, Judge, Ms Recorder Caroline Sellars said his behaviour will severely damage the public's trust in police.

She said: "I'm sentencing you for offences you were able to commit because of that trust and responsibility that you held in your position. Your actions are a serious breach in the public's trust in the police force generally. The damage to the public trust and confidence in policing is immeasurable."

And in relation to the stalking offence, the Judge said: "You were motivated by our own feelings and your own needs. You didn't give a thought to [the victim]. You were unwilling to take no for an answer."

Mark Styles, mitigating said that Waugh had been a hardworking police officer for almost 20 years and was highly thought of by his colleagues. He also served in the army in the late 1990s and was well-respected by his comrades. He said: "On reflection now he understands the gravity of his offending behaviour." Waugh was also given a five year restraining order to keep him away from his victim.