Rockhampton Station.  The Rockhampton Police Station.  Pic Peter Wallis
Rockhampton Station. The Rockhampton Police Station. Pic Peter Wallis

Why Rocky cop illegally accessed police records

A ROCKHAMPTON police officer accessed police records illegally to find out personal information about a person he was associating with.

Cameron Blake Mcadam, 25, pleaded guilty today in Rockhampton Magistrates Court to one count of using a restricted computer without the consent of the computer's controller - Queensland Police Service.

Police prosecutor Sergeant Shaun Janes said Mcadam was a first year constable at Rockhampton Police Station at the time of the offence.

He said Mcadam was living in a share house with two other police officers on the Capricorn Coast.

Sgt Janes said one of those officers was dating a man Mcadam looked up on police computers without permission of his superior officer during his shift on March 26, 2020.

He said there was no SMS evidence between Mcadam and his housemate about the access, however an SMS between the housemate and her boyfriend revealed she had received information about the man that was contained in police records through Mcadam.

Sgt Janes said Mcadam had no criminal record.

Defence lawyer Troy Schmidt said his client had heard rumours the man his housemate was dating was a criminal involved in the drug trade.

He said as a consequence of the rumours, Mcadam thought he had to declare, according to Queensland Police policy, a personal association with the man who visited his residence.

Mr Schmidt said the policy outlined Mcadam should've gone to his supervisor about the matter instead of accessing the police records without permission.

He explained the policy outlined the information was something Mcadam was entitled, but could not access it himself.

Mr Schmidt said Mcadam told his housemate of the information as she, being a sworn officer, needed to declare a personal association with the man.

He said Mcadam passed the information on because he did not want the male attending his residence anymore.

"There's been no benefit to my client from this," Mr Schmidt said.

He said his client was attempting to do the right thing, comply by the policy, but didn't due to inexperience , but was caught by "black letter" of the policy.

Mr Schmidt said due to Mcadam being on the usual 12 month probation period first year constables were subjected to, he could face termination from QPS or internal disciplinary actions after the court matter was finalised.

Mr Schmidt said such actions usually resulted in officers being terminated.

He said Mcadams' housemate had since left the police service.

Magistrate Cameron Press said Mcadam's actions undermined the community's confidence in police.

He fined Mcadam $600 and no conviction was recorded.