A Queensland policeman is accused of grooming a 15-year-old girl he met when he interviewed her over nude photos she circulated, a court has heard.
Matthew Paul Hockley allegedly used Snapchat, making sexual and suggestive comments to the teenager after interviewing her over the photographs she had circulated at school.
He was working at the Inala Child Protection and Investigation Unit at the time.
The 33-year-old allegedly contacted the girl on the social media app, telling her he wanted to make sure she was staying safe online, prosecutor Judy Geary told the Brisbane District Court on Monday.
But over about three weeks from July 30, 2019 they sent more than 1000 chat messages and 30 images.
A Queensland police officer allegedly used Snapchat to make sexual and suggestive comments to a teenage girl after interviewing her over the photographs she had circulated at school (stock image)
The officer allegedly invited her on holiday, told her he slept naked and called her ‘beautiful’. He is also accused of commenting on sexual interactions between older men and girls, and talking about a 50-year-old man caught indecently touching his daughter.
During the same period the senior constable also had a ‘sexual encounter’ with the girl’s mother, referring to it in a conversation with the teenager, Ms Geary told the court.
Hockley allegedly said he had an attraction to ‘girls calling guys “Daddy” during sex’ and the teen girl’s ‘ass should be worshipped’.
‘He also mentioned she was a professional at taking nude photographs, called her cute and… said “Hello Beautiful”,’ Ms Geary told the court.
She said no messages could be retrieved during the investigation because Snapchat messages – which can include photos or text – are automatically deleted after being viewed. Senders are also notified if someone takes a screenshot of conversations.
But the girl did take pictures of three conversations using another device, the court heard.
Ms Geary said another police officer who also worked at the Inala unit watched part of the live-feed of Hockley’s interview with the girl and her mother about the photographs.
‘He heard him (Hockley) mention something about the professionalism of the nude photographs (the teenager) had taken of herself,’ she told the court.
Matthew Paul Hockley was working at the Inala Child Protection and Investigation Unit at the time he is accused of grooming a 15-year-old girl (stock image)
Defence barrister Matt Black said Hockley admitted communicating with the teenager via Snapchat for several weeks.
But the content of messages – aside from those the girl photographed – are in dispute, Mr Black told the court.
‘The first issue for you is, can the prosecution prove those disputed messages beyond reasonable doubt?’ he told the jury in his opening address.
Mr Black asked the jury to also consider whether the prosecution could prove Hockley had an unlawful intention when he sent the messages.
Hockley pleaded not guilty on Monday to one count each of grooming a child under 16 with intent to procure engagement in a sexual act, grooming a child under 16 with intent to expose to indecent matter and using the internet to procure a child under 16.
The jury trial is set down for three days before Judge Bernard Porter.