A serving Lincolnshire Police officer has been charged with rape.
PC Fraser McDowall, 23, was arrested on November 5 and charged today (February 2).
The charge relates to the rape of a woman which is alleged to have occurred in Lincoln in the early hours of October 16 last year while PC McDowall was off duty.
Lincolnshire Police’s Professional Standards Department has been informed and PC McDowall, a Lincoln-based probationary police officer, has been suspended while the investigation is ongoing. The matter was referred to the Independent Office for Police Conduct who decided it should be subject to a local investigation by the force.
Following the charge, PC McDowall was released on police bail to appear at Lincoln Magistrates’ Court on March 10.*
Lincolnshire Police Chief Constable Chris Haward said: “I know this will be concerning and upsetting to people in our communities in Lincolnshire and further afield; our entire Lincolnshire Police family feels this way too. It has come at a time when police officer conduct is under intense scrutiny and is the subject of almost daily news reporting, so we understand keenly the public’s concern about allegations such as these. We have taken swift measures to ensure that this matter has been investigated thoroughly and robustly, and work continues even though a charge has now been brought. We are providing specialist support to the alleged victim and will continue to do so throughout the process.
“I would like to remind everyone that we must allow the criminal and court proceedings to take place without prejudice. It is not right to speculate about the outcome and as soon as there are any significant updates, we will make sure we release that information to you.”
*Note to editors: It is possible that the court location and date might change. Please check with court listings for up-to-date information.