Former police officer and scout leader facing jail for child sex offences
- Credit: Terry Harris
A former police officer from March – who once famously said of criminals ‘I love locking them up’ – is tonight behind bars awaiting sentence on child sex charges.
PC Phil Richardson, 49, who was based at March Police Station, appeared at Luton Magistrates' Court on Thursday (November 21).
He had also been a scout leader for 27 years.
Richardson admitted three counts of making an indecent photograph/pseudo-photograph of a child and two counts of distributing an indecent photograph/pseudo-photograph of a child.
"Richardson was arrested in May and dismissed by the force on July 3," said a police spokesman.
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Richardson was remanded into custody and is due to appear at Luton Crown Court on December 13 for sentencing.
"It must be a massive - almost unimaginable - nightmare to his family," said a parent who was told of Richardson's arrest shortly after it happened. "It will have absolutely devastated family members including the children who will almost be certain to be in trauma and feeling isolated and numb while they try to make sense of it all"
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Eight years ago PC Richardson was a popular beat bobby and told the county council ShapeYourPlace community website that people should keep their "eyes and ears open" in a bid to catch offenders.
"Let's make March a dangerous place for the criminals," he said. "I love locking them up, the more I can get them off the streets the better the chances of me having a smiley photo."
In 2010 the Cambs Times covered Richardson's wedding after he and his bride had said they wanted as many friends and family as possible to feel included in the ceremony.
The bride was accompanied down the aisle by 12 bridesmaids, five pageboys and 10 cub scouts.
Her attendants included representatives of March Marlins Swimming Club, Fenland Music Centre and cubs from the 2nd March Saxons as they walked down the aisle of Trinity Church, March.
Richardson had met his bride while both were cub leaders; the wedding was held on Phil's birthday and he also took his wife's surname - a break from tradition.
He said of the wedding: "Some of the things were my ideas and because I have been involved in scouting since 1992 as an adult I wanted it to be part of our special day".