England

Rape accused police officer cleared of seven charges

Pc Stephen Mitchell
Image caption Mr Mitchell has been cleared of seven charges

A Pc accused of raping and assaulting vulnerable women has been cleared of seven charges.

Stephen Mitchell, 42, was found not guilty of three counts of rape, two counts of misconduct in a public office and two counts of indecent assault.

The jury at Newcastle Crown Court will return on Tuesday to consider a further two counts of rape, four of indecent assault and 13 of misconduct.

The Northumbria Police officer, from Glasgow, denies all the charges.

After three days of deliberation, the judge Mr Justice Wilkie told the jury he would accept majority verdicts on the remaining charges.

During the five-week trial the court heard Mitchell was accused of preying on heroin addicts who had been arrested.

The police officer said his 16 accusers were liars and opportunists.

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