Laura Geitz search lands cop $4000 fine
A GOLD Coast cop who used the police database to search personal details of dozens of people including netball star Laura Geitz has been slapped with a $4000 fine.
Broadbeach police officer Stephen Patrick Wright, 40, pleaded guilty in the Southport Magistrates court this morning to using Queensland Police Service QPRIME computer database 80 times to access personal details of school friends, family members and high-profile netball star Ms Geitz.
The court heard Wright used the database to snoop on personal details between April and October last year.
Wright was stood down from active duties following the charges and has been "tasked to perform non-operational duties" since November.
However, the court heard Wright had been on sick leave since being stood down and this morning submitted his medical retirement from the QPS.
Police prosecutor senior sergeant Eric Engwirda told the court Wright had searched the database for "personal use not police business".
Defence lawyer Calvin Gnech said Wright had a "blossoming professional career" and was considered as "professional and ethical" after entering the police force in 2004.
The court heard he rose to the rank of sergeant after six years in the force but after attending several suicides, including one of a friend, and a death in custody Wright had developed a mental illness.
"He is a broken man ... with suicidal tendencies," Mr Gnech said.
"He won't work again."
The court heard Wright did not remember doing many of the searches.
"When interviewed he claimed he did not know who the Australian netball captain was," Mr Gnech said.
Magistrate Gary finger said he was "concerned" about the "amount of times" Wright had accessed the database.
Wright was convicted and handed a $4000 fine for using a restricted computer without consent.