Portsmouth navy base worker harassed former lover

AN INTELLIGENCE worker suffering with PTSD after viewing images of torture and violence to children harassed his former lover at a naval base, a court heard.

Peter Dodd admitted sending his ex-partner a Christmas card, phoning him and trying to strike up a conversation at work at Portsmouth Naval Base.

But Portsmouth Magistrates’ Court heard how Dodd, 28, was suffering from the fall-out of his work looking at images of torture.

Prosecutor Graham Heath said Dodd carried out the harassment between November 1 last year and January 29 this year.

Mitigating, Adrianne McLoughlin said her client had suffered ‘trauma’ and dealt with the relationship break-up badly.

‘He works in intelligence currently, he’s been away in the Middle East,’ Ms McLoughlin said.

‘His job requires him to look at extremely distressing images of all sorts of distressing things.

‘They include all sorts of torture, violence towards children, that’s had a massive impact on him.’

The court heard Dodd, now living in Dawlish, Devon, was also suffering from a lung tumour, but was now in remission. He suffered a breakdown as a result of his work and is set to complete a six to seven-week treatment course.

Dodd will be discharged from the military later this month, Ms McLoughlin said.

But sentencing him, magistrates said his actions fell into the lowest category of seriousness and the circumstances were ‘very unusual’.

Chairman of the bench Gary Hughes, who was told Dodd’s mother had been given a leukaemia diagnosis, imposed a conditional discharge and restraining order, both lasting for a year.

But he added: ‘The bench will also like to extend our sympathy at the circumstances you find yourself in and your mother’s, but also your sacrifice you’ve made on behalf of your country.

‘It would disappoint the bench greatly if the services were to turn their back on you.’

Dodd must pay a £20 victim surcharge and £85 costs.

Outlining the case, Mr Heath said despite having no previous convictions Dodd had a previous caution for harassment in 2011 in relation to the same victim.

The prosecutor said Dodd ‘didn’t heed the words of that caution’.

Dodd pleaded guilty to harassment at his first appearance and admitted what he did to police.