Peter Daniel Drummond
Full story of anti-terrorism policeman who drove 800 miles for sex with young girl in Cornwall
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Peter Drummond was found not guilty of raping the 14-year-old but was jailed for eight years
At Truro Crown Court on Tuesday (February 18) Ministry of Defence police officer Peter Drummond was sentenced to eight years in prison after being found guilty by a jury of three counts of sexual activity with a child.
Peter Daniel Drummond was married and a father of young children but he threw a life many would envy away to indulge his twisted desires by twice driving from the Home Counties to have sex with a vulnerable 14-year-old girl from Cornwall who he met online.
One of the most disturbing aspects of the case is that not only did Drummond utilise social media to groom the teenager but he also used the mapping feature on Snapchat to find her home.
On one occasion he let himself in the back door of the property and on another he climbed through her bedroom window knowing her stepfather was only feet away within the same home.
Cornwall Live has followed Drummond’s high-profile trial from start to finish. A court order mean we were not allowed to report any of it, due to the vulnerability of the brave victim who gave evidence, until the prosecution had finished putting forward its case.
The girl cannot be named because the law guarantees her anonimity for life as a victim of a sexual offence.
Here’s how we reported it along the way…
The opening (February 11)
Truro Crown Court heard how 38-year-old Drummond travelled to the South West twice to allegedly rape the girl when she was 14 years old.
He found her address using Snapchat mapping. While she had seen his picture before, the first time the pair met was on the first occasion he is alleged to have raped her in her bedroom.
On the next occasion, the court heard, Drummond was said to have driven down to Cornwall in the evening and climbed in through her bedroom window, where he was alleged to have raped her a second time.
Drummond, of West View Terrace, Three Mile Cross, Berkshire, appeared in court faced with three charges of rape and three alternative charges of sexual activity with a child.
Four of the charges relate to October 26 of 2017 while two date to November 17, 2017. He had denied all the charges.
The court heard Drummond has worked as a specialist anti-terrorism police officer with the Ministry of Defence since 2006.
Fiona Elder, prosecuting, said Drummond allegedly befriended the girl on social media, using Kik messenger and Snapchat.
Addressing the jury, she said: “There are two allegations that he travelled from his home in the Home Counties to Cornwall and raped her in her bedroom at her parents’ home.
“You may think the dangers of social media are highlighted in this case where a child finds herself in a situation that they do not understand and they do not want. You may think, having heard the evidence in this case, that this is what happened on this particular occasion.”
She said the girl was distressed previously and met a man on social media who appeared to be supportive.
Ms Elder said. “Online he had been supportive as she had anxiety. You may want to think that that support from him online had an ulterior motive.”
Ms Elder said police used automatic number plate recognition cameras to show that Drummond’s BMW had travelled down and returned from Cornwall on the dates when the girl alleged she was raped.
“He had come to her house using Snapchat mapping,” she added. “There is no dispute that she did go through a sexual experience. As you will hear, Mr Drummond admits having sexual intercourse with her on these occasions.”
She said Drummond allegedly told the girl to tell the police that she had said she was 17 years old.
She said the girl told police: “He knew my age. I told him the first time I met him. He told me to say I was 17.”
Ms Elder added: “Pushed for details, she said sex had occurred and she did not want it.”
She said the girl later described how she allegedly asked Drummond to stop but he ignored her.
The court heard the girl had mentioned in an email that she was “having lunch at school” and Ms Elder added to the jury: “You may think that is some very stark evidence, let alone what she looks like, in relation to her age for Mr Drummond.”
She said evidence of Drummond’s DNA was found in the girl’s bedroom.
The court also heard how the girl received £30 from a bank account in the name of P Drummond, which the prosecution alleged was the defendant’s account, so that she could buy a new pair of shoes.
The mother’s evidence (February 13)
The girl’s mother revealed she first found out about the rumours from a friend’s mum.
Giving evidence during the trial, the mum told the jury how her daughter had a laptop, mobile phone and iPad and used the devices daily. She took to the witness stand a day after the judge cleared the court of spectators and press for her daughter to give evidence.
The mother said she first became aware of the sexual activity involving her daughter and the defendant when she was contacted by one of her daughter’s friend’s mums.
She said: “I was told about a rumour going around school that she had contact with someone by the name of Pete who was high up in the police force and who had raped her. I was told he’s also purchased her shoes.
“Initially she said the rumours weren’t true but she became more and more upset and didn’t want to talk about it.”
The mum confirmed that her daughter did have new shoes around this time and when she asked to see her bank statement she could see a payment of £30 made by P. Drummond.
The mum added: “I spoke to her again and couldn’t understand her because she was so upset. She said he came into our house and raped her and that she didn’t want him to do that.
“She said he added her on Snapchat and Instagram under the name Bulldog. She said they’d been chatting and he found our address on Snapchat maps and came to our home while we were out. She said he’d come in the back of the house.”
The mother added how, on the first occasion Drummond visited she and her partner had been out shopping and when they came home the girl stayed in her room and “didn’t engage with anyone”.
On the second occasion the mum was working a night shift but her partner was at home while her daughter was in her bedroom.
The mother said: “At 6am she messaged me saying she wasn’t feeling well and was in her room when I got home. She was quite subdued.”
The arrest (February 13)
Giving evidence, Detective Constable Michael Duffy said that when he went to arrest Drummond the door was opened by his wife.
He said: “Peter Drummond was arrested on December 11, 2017, on the suspicion of the rape of a girl under 16. When his wife opened the door I asked to speak to Peter Drummond and she told me he was upstairs.
“She called for him to come down and he came down five or ten minutes later. He came into the porch, closed the door into the living room and was arrested. He showed no reaction.”
It was while Drummond was upstairs waiting that he reset his phone to erase evidence of contact with his victim.
The defence (February 14)
Drummons told a jury that she “looked well over the age of consent”.
Taking to the witness stand, softly spoken Drummond said that when he had sex with the girl he was still legally married but separated from his wife.
Answering the questions of defence barrister Kaja Reiff Musgrove, Drummond confirmed that he’d been employed with the Ministry of Defence since 2005 and was responsible for the safeguarding of state establishments around the country.
He said that curiosity had led to him joining a Kik internet chatroom where he met the girl, saying that he presumed she was an adult.
When asked about his first impressions regarding her age, he replied “probably would have said 18-ish, 17/18 something like that” and said that there were no questions about her age during their communication.
The defendant said their conversation progressed and then moved on to Snapchat, on which he claimed she had “a sexualised name” that suggested she was “sexually confident”.
He said: “After Snapchat we used Skype a few times. She would tell me she had problems with her natural father and because of this she had been self-harming so I was trying to support her and encourage her to speak to her mum about the issues with her dad.”
When asked about seeing her face during a Skype call, Drummond confirmed he did and that the girl “looked well over the age of consent”.
He added: “She’s quite tall, almost as tall as me. I’d estimate she’s 5ft 7, fairly tall for a woman. She’s curvy and has the physique of an adult woman. At no point did I have any doubt she was under the age of consent.
“She suggested I came to see her and I think it was the night of the 25th, quite late on. She said she was unhappy and wanted to see me. I thought we were leaning to becoming more of an item – a relationship.
“We’d been communicating for a week or two and she gave me her address.”
Drummond said the girl told him where to park and he entered her home via the back door that had been left unlocked.
He said: “I walked in and she came running out and jumped on me and hugged me before leading me to the bedroom. We talked. I asked if she was ok, etc. We were sat on the bed and chatted for 15 or 20 minutes I’d say at a guess.”
Drummond then detailed his interpretation of events of how hugging progressed to kissing, foreplay and eventually consensual sex.
He said that after talking for a while they said their goodbyes and he embarked on the long drive home, adding that they carried on chatting as before afterwards.
Regarding the November 17 meeting he said: “She was talking about self-harming again and that she wanted to see me. I was concerned for her and didn’t want her to do anything stupid. I felt if I could give her any support I’d be happy to do that.
“It was arranged fairly last minute and she said her stepfather would be in the house which is why she told me to come in through the window. I arrived very late into the evening, around 10-ish.”
Drummond claimed the two ate Doritos before again kissing and having consensual sex, concluding “after we cuddled and I think I nodded off for a bit. I woke up in the early hours of the morning and we said our goodbyes and I left out the window again.”
The defendant described how the two continued chatting as before and that he sent her money to buy shoes to “cheer her up”.
He said that around five days after the second meeting he received a message saying “hide or disappear”.
Drummond said: “She said someone had seen her phone and the message had got back to her mother she’d been raped. I said she needed to tell her it wasn’t rape but she said she’s sorry but is going to go along with it. I was panicked, frustrated and angry and did not want any communication with her so I reset my phone. It was apparent she’d gone along with the allegations and I got the blame.”
The verdict (February 18)
After a week-long trial and three hours of deliberation a jury convicted Drummond on Monday (February 18) of three counts of sexual activity with a child. He was found not guilty of three charges of rape.
Drummond sighed in the dock as the verdicts were read out.
The court had heard Drummond has worked as a specialist anti-terrorism police officer with the Ministry of Defence since 2006.
Drummond was told he’d be sentenced later that morning once the opening of another trial had concluded.
The sentence (February 18)
Drummond was branded a disgrace and jailed after a victim personal statement read to the court detailed how his victim had to move schools because of bullying once the rumour had spread around her school.
She described feeling broken and even on one occasion attempting to take her life.
The girl’s family is also said to have suffered as a consequence of Drummond’s offending, with her mum unable to work night shifts in order to be with her daughter and her stepfather leaving the family as a result of the stress associated with the proceedings.
The mother said that it has left her daughter “utterly destroyed”.
Defending Drummond, Kaja Reiff Musgrove said there was nothing in his background to suggest any other offending or sexual interest in children.
She said: “Mr Drummond is a man of extreme good character and his has been an extreme fall from grace. He has a responsible job with the MoD police and has lost his employment and his career.
“He is not going to be popular among inmates and his period in custody will be a significant greater punishment.”
Sentencing Drummond, Judge Simon Carr said the circumstances are “as shocking as they are depressing”.
He said: “You were a 37-year-old man with a responsible job. You chose to socialise in a variety of chatrooms where you conceded in your evidence you were as likely to meet teenagers as adults.
“You met the victim, a 14-year-old girl, with significant psychological problems and she opened up to you that she was unhappy and had been self-harming.
“The action of any decent human being was to get her help or to try and contact her parents but you are not a decent human being. You exploited your position as you had found someone you could manipulate.
“You pretended to show care and have her interests at heart but the way you met her showed you were interested in her sexually.
“You drove five hours and went into her house when you knew her parents were not present. You were in her house for around one and a half hours. Once you’d had sex with her you didn’t comfort her, you left her and drove home to be with your family.
“One would have thought your moral compass would have said this must never happen again but you continued your communication with her and next time you visited you took a condom as sex was the only thing on your mind.
“You got in this time through the window because her stepfather was in the house. I suspect this was part of the thrill.
“The effect on the victim has been devastating. She has been bullied and forced to leave her school. The effect has not just been on her but her mother. Her stepfather had to come to terms with the fact he’d been present while you were with the victim and his relationship with the girl’s mother broke down.
“There was an element of planning and grooming and you knew she was underage, or at least would have soon from the beginning.”
Drummond was jailed for eight years and told he must sign the sex offenders’ register for life.
Devon and Cornwall Police reaction
Detective Inspector Paul Norlund, senior investigating officer, welcomed the sentence.
He said: “Devon and Cornwall Police welcome the eight-year jail sentence for Peter Drummond in this complex and serious case.
“The young victim has conducted herself courageously throughout this enquiry and shown a tremendous strength of character whilst giving evidence at the trial to allow us to bring this dangerous and callous offender to justice. Whilst we hope that this verdict will allow her to find closure, this will be an ordeal that she will live with for a considerable time.
“She has been supported by specialist officers and her family throughout, and we would ask that her and her family are left in peace and to be given the space that will hopefully allow them to move forward from this sad episode.
“Peter Drummond is a disgrace to his family and the organisation he was employed by. He has refused to show any remorse for his premeditated actions and put his victim both through the ordeal of these attacks and forcing her to relive those painful memories in court.”
What the NSPCC has said
Commenting on the sentencing, an NSPCC spokesman for the South West of England said: “Drummond relentlessly pursued his underage victim on social media, tracking her whereabouts so that he could satisfy his sexual desires.
“His actions will have a long-lasting impact on the teenage girl involved, who has bravely spoken out to ensure he is unable to target other vulnerable young people in this way.
“Not enough is being done to protect children online and we’re campaigning for social networks to offer safe accounts for children and proactively search for, and stop, child grooming on their platforms.”
The NSPCC’s Wild West Web campaign is demanding that the Government make the internet safe for young people by regulating social networks. Supporters can join our campaign here.
The Wild West Web campaign is calling on Government to:
Create a tough regulator to hold social networks to account.
Require social networks to publish reports outlining the scale of risks on their sites.
Force social networks to take proactive steps to tackle grooming.
Any adult concerned about the welfare of a child or young person can call the NSPCC helpline for free and confidential advice on 0808 800 5000 or visitnspcc.org.uk
Children can contact Childline on 0800 1111 or childline.org.uk 24/7, 365 days a year, and speak to a counsellor about a worry or concern they may have.