An Avon and Somerset Police officer has been sacked and barred from policing for life after he was found to have committed gross misconduct.

A hearing found that PC Dave Lovell shared intimate images of three women on the internet without their consent or knowledge. He was also proven to have sex with a police employee while on duty at a police station - and that he had engaged in an inappropriate relationship with a separate former police employee.

The sentence was handed down on Wednesday, May 3, by Chief Constable Sarah Crew, following a misconduct hearing.

Investigations into Lovell began after one of women whose images had been shared online contacted the police Professional Standards Department in May 2021. She had learned that intimate images of her had been posted on the internet after being told by a friend.

The woman, who retains her anonymity, told investigators that she had shared the images with Lovell consensually, but had never agreed that they could be posted online.

After the investigation was launched, investigators discovered Lovell had posted intimate images of a further two women to the internet. The women were identified and contacted by the police.

None of the women wished to proceed with a criminal complaint, but supported the misconduct hearing on the condition their anonymity was protected.

Head of Professional Standards, Supt Mark Edgington, said: “This has been an extremely distressing case for the three women involved and they’ve shown incredible fortitude and courage in supporting these misconduct proceedings against PC Lovell.

“As soon as the first allegation was received, he was suspended from duty and a thorough investigation was carried out, resulting in the other complainants being identified and informed.

“PC Lovell has exploited and abused the confidence placed in him by the complainants; his behaviour has been nothing short of disgraceful.

“It’s right he should never be able to serve in law enforcement again as he’s proven himself to be incapable of upholding the high standards expected of him. He’s betrayed the trust bestowed on him by the public, which in turn negatively impacts on the confidence the public have in their police service.”

Lovell is set to be placed on a national barred list which will ban him from ever being employed by another police force or law enforcement agency.