A FORMER police office who lied about her healthy daughter having cancer so she could have time off work to tend to her childrens’ fledgling showjumping careers has been jailed for 18 months.
Rachel Hewitt, 40, of Ash Grove, South Elmsall, even accepted gifts for her daughter from fellow officers who, believing the young girl was seriously ill, had a whip round to buy her a portable DVD player and vouchers.
Hull Crown Court heard today (Monday) that Hemwitt has two daughters, Natasha, 16, and Jessica, 13, who are both successful showjumpers heavily involved in the circuit.
In around August or September 2009, Hewitt, who was a traffic officer with North Yorkshire Police, started claiming that her eldest daughter had found a lump after falling off her horse, and that it was cancerous.
Simon Batiste, prosecuting, said that from then on until her arrest, “she maintained a fictitious account” that her daughter was seriously ill with cancer.
She was given large amounts of time off work as a North Yorkshire Police traffic officers, and took a long career break to look after her daughter.
Many of the dates she took off appeared to coincide with occasions when one of her daughters was performing, although the prosecution said they could not show this was criminal.
Earlier this year Hewitt pleaded guilty to two charges, one of fraud and the other of misconduct in a public office. Both relate to a period between January 1, 2009, and October 10, 2011.
Sentencing Hewitt, Judge Simon Jack said: “Your actions have wounded the trust police officers place in each other.”
For more on this story, see this week’s Hemsworth and South Elmsall Express.