The Courier & Advertiser (Perth and Perthshire Edition)

Sex text chief con­sta­ble gets vote of con­fi­dence

- Alan Wil­son Crime · Paul Martin · Arbeidersparty · Scottish Government · Dundee · Scottish National Party · James McGovern · Jenny Marra · Scottish Conservatives

THE CON­VENER of Tay­side Po­lice Joint Board has given a vote of con­fi­dence to Chief Con­sta­ble Justine Curran af­ter reve­la­tions she sent a sex text about a se­nior male col­league to her per­sonal as­sis­tant.

Coun­cil­lor Jimmy Black said he fully backed Ms Curran de­spite the force ad­mit­ting her texts had not been “ap­pro­pri­ately pro­fes­sional” and said the mat­ter should be seen in the proper con­text.

Ms Curran re­port­edly sent the rude text to her for­mer PATheresa Noble, about the size of a col­league’s man­hood and his af­fair with a fe­male civil­ian staff mem­ber.

The mes­sage ex­change is said to have been started by Ms Curran ask­ing whether the of­fi­cer, who has not been named, was at the force’s Bell Street head­quar­ters.

Ms Noble replied he was not and was prob­a­bly with the per­son he was hav­ing the af­fair with. At that point, the po­lice chief made the com­ment and Ms Noble was said to have replied: “Yuck.”

Ms Noble (47) and Ms Curran worked closely and were good friends — the per­sonal as­sis­tant babysat the chief’s chil­dren at the of­fi­cer’s home.

But Noble was ar­rested a few weeks af­ter the text ex­change and charged along with her part­ner Paul Martin with an al­leged in­sur­ance fraud and wast­ing po­lice time.

Coun­cil­lor Jimmy Black, con­vener of the joint po­lice board backed Ms Curran over the text mes­sages and said an in­ves­ti­ga­tion had been car­ried out into the cir­cum­stances.

He said: “The mem­bers of Tay­side Joint Po­lice Board are sat­is­fied that the al­le­ga­tions have been taken se­ri­ously, con­sid­ered at the cor­rect level throughout and dealt with ap­pro­pri­ately.

“On be­half of the board, I wish to ex­press our con­tin­u­ing and un­qual­i­fied sup­port to the whole force ex­ec­u­tive for their valu­able work and con­tri­bu­tion to the peo­ple of Tay­side.

“In the light of the re­cent crime sta­tis­tics, the chief con­sta­ble clearly leads a very ef­fec­tive force and we need to see this mat­ter in its proper con­text.”

A Tay­side Po­lice spokesman said: “There is no de­nial what­so­ever that some of the cor­re­spon­dence may not have been ap­pro­pri­ately pro­fes­sional.”

Dun­deeWest Labour MP Jim McGovern also fully backed Ms Curran, say­ing: “I have met Justine Curran on a good few oc­ca­sions and I have got noth­ing but re­spect for her.”

North-East MSP Jenny Marra said: “I would hope that this mat­ter was prop­erly in­ves­ti­gated by pro­fes­sional stan­dards and dis­cussed and de­bated by the joint board.

“These mat­ters should be dealt with in ex­actly the same way, whether it is the chief con­sta­ble or any other mem­ber of staff.”

A Scot­tish Gov­ern­ment spokesper­son said: “This is a mat­ter forTay­side Po­lice and Tay­side Joint Po­lice Board.”

Dundee’s lo­cal SNP politi­cians said they had noth­ing to add to Mr Black’s com­ments while the Scot­tish Con­ser­va­tive Party also de­clined to com­ment.

The text ex­change pre­ceded Theresa Noble’s sus­pen­sion af­ter be­ing charged with at­tempted in­sur­ance fraud and wast­ing po­lice time, charges which were later

Jimmy dropped as she gave ev­i­dence at the trial of her for­mer part­ner and co-ac­cused Paul Martin, who was later found not guilty.

The mes­sages were found on Ms Noble’s work phone, which led to dis­ci­plinary mea­sures against two of­fi­cers ac­cused of ex­ceed­ing their author­ity in deal­ings with the phone.

The force said the mat­ter was in­ves­ti­gated by and re­ported to the joint board.

A po­lice source said the mat­ter had caused the chief con­sta­ble “ex­treme em­bar­rass­ment”.

Ms Curran has been in charge of polic­ing in Tay­side for more than two years, hav­ing pre­vi­ously served as Deputy Chief Con­sta­ble in Fe­bru­ary 2009. Ear­lier this year the force posted sta­tis­tics show­ing it had met or ex­ceeded al­most all tar­gets. Fig­ures showed of­fi­cers had sur­passed their tar­get of solv­ing 46.5% of all se­ri­ous vi­o­lent crimes.

 ??  ?? Ms Curran was given the back­ing of the con­vener of the joint po­lice board over the text in­ci­dent.
Ms Curran was given the back­ing of the con­vener of the joint po­lice board over the text in­ci­dent.
 ??  ?? Black.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK