A POLICE sergeant who had intercourse with a “vulnerable” 16-year-old and paid for a sex worker has been dismissed without notice.

Simon Short was the subject of a police misconduct hearing at West Yorkshire Police’s headquarters, in Wakefield between June 10 and June 12 this year.

The Telegraph & Argus has access to the report following the outcome of the hearing, after requesting it from the force.

Short’s actions were determined to be “gross misconduct”.

He was granted anonymity while the proceedings took place, and referred to as “Officer X”, but the Legally Qualified Chair lifted this at the conclusion of the hearing, after the reporting restriction was challenged by “R” on behalf of Newsquest.

The officer, who was a sergeant and had worked within a safeguarding department, engaged in sexual activity with a 16-year-old “vulnerable female” – given the name “Miss A” for the proceedings – several years ago.

This was while off duty but a spokesperson for West Yorkshire Police said he was late for a shift once because of his actions.

Short was aware of the teenager’s age and that she was “alone at the hotel” at one point.

The report said social services records demonstrated Miss A’s vulnerabilities and “by having consensual sex with her the potential for harm was present”.

Short failed to take any steps to ascertain the personal circumstances of the teenager, according to the report.

It added: “The training and his role in safeguarding should have made Officer X alive to these fears.

“It was not her responsibility to set boundaries in her relationship with Officer X, but his.”

Just under a year after that, Short exchanged a series of messages with a “vulnerable” woman and a known sex worker – named in these proceedings as “Miss B”.

He arranged to pay for sexual services and subsequently confirmed his attendance at her premises.

Some of the messages were sent while Short was at work.

The report said: “His use of her services potentially perpetuates the cycle of exploitation.”

Short was suspended from duty pending the outcome of the misconduct hearing, when he was based in Contact in West Yorkshire Police’s Operational Support department.

The panel concluded that Short’s actions ran the risk of “severely undermining public confidence in the police and their role in safeguarding vulnerable persons”.

The report said: “The legitimacy and effectiveness of UK policing is built on relationships between the police and the public, but there are challenges in this relationship after several high-profile cases involving officers’ sexual misconduct.”

It added that Short’s actions “demonstrated a lack of respect for vulnerable females and a failure to maintain appropriate boundaries.”

The panel gave Short some credit for his factual admissions but said there was no evidence of remorse or insight.

Short’s service history and a character reference “attesting to his positive character” were also taken into account.

It was submitted on behalf of Short that a final written warning or reduction in rank would be an appropriate punishment.

The panel decided neither were suitable sanctions.

Detective Chief Superintendent Nicola Bryar, Head of West Yorkshire Police’s Professional Standards Directorate, said: “As a police service, we are committed to protecting vulnerable members of our communities.

“This officer’s actions were unethical and not in line with the values of West Yorkshire Police. 

“From our enquiries, we are satisfied that this officer did not meet either female in the course of his duties.

“The sexual activity that took place was all while he was off duty, although it did result in him being late for a shift on one occasion.

“We also found evidence that some messages were sent to ‘Miss B’ while on duty. 

“We need a workforce we can trust.

“Everyone working in policing holds a privileged position in society and it is important that their behaviour both on and off duty does not bring discredit on the police service.”

Short will be added to the College of Policing’s Barred List preventing him from gaining further employment in policing.