Beds, Herts & Bucks

HMP Aylesbury officer jailed over sex texts to inmate

HMP Aylesbury
Image caption Chelsea Blackwell exchanged more than 850 texts and about 115 phone calls with a young inmate between 13 July and 5 August 2016

A prison officer has been jailed after she had an inappropriate relationship with a young inmate.

Chelsea Blackwell exchanged more than 850 text messages and 115 phone calls, some of a sexual nature, with the 21-year-old offender.

Blackwell, 27, of Harris Drive, Bootle, Merseyside, had been a prison officer at Aylesbury Young Offender Institution since 2015.

She was given an eight-month jail term at Aylesbury Crown Court.

Blackwell, formerly of Sheriff Close, Aylesbury was charged on 21 February and on 20 July admitted to misconduct in a public office.

She had used a second phone to make five further calls after the inmate's phone was seized in a cell search.

Four letters were also found in the prisoner's cell, and more at Blackwell's Merseyside home.

'Abused her position'

A forensic handwriting report concluded there was "very strong evidence" that Blackwell had written them, said the Crown Prosecution Service.

Many of the letters, calls and texts were made in the early hours, and some of the calls lasted for several hours.

Louise Attrill, Senior Crown Prosecutor, said the Crown Prosecution Service put together a "robust case" using mobile phone data, cell site analysis and handwriting analysis to show Blackwell had abused her position.

"Incidents like this by prison officers are extremely rare but they amount to an abuse of the public's trust which has the potential to lead to corruption or blackmail. They are treated with the utmost seriousness", she said.

Following sentencing, PC Nicola Ambrose of Thames Valley Police said Blackwell's actions "were completely unacceptable."

The inmate was serving a seven-year sentence for wounding with intent.

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