A FORMER police officer controlled his ex-partner by monitoring her mobile phone, demanding she delete her Facebook account, and turning up at her work to check up on her, a court was told.

Elliott Jowett, 43, pleaded guilty to engaging in controlling and coercive behaviour towards his ex-girlfriend, over a period of five months.

Preston Crown Court heard that shortly after meeting his ex-partner in March 2017, Jowett’s behaviour became irrational to the point where he would call her phone up to 100 times a day, monitor her online presence and demand she delete her Facebook account in order to have a joint one with him.

Prosecuting, Paul Brookwell said: “When they weren’t together he would ring her on the phone and ask her to take photos of herself to prove where she was and who she was with; he would delete male contacts from her phone, checked her internet history and her movements, and wouldn’t let her go out with her family or friends, often locking her in the house.

“He even accused her of having an affair and checked-up on her by turning up to her work. Despite the controlling nature of his behaviour, he wasn’t violent towards her, but would send her abusive messages.”

Mr Brookwell said Jowett’s victim suffered immense emotional distress and was even diagnosed with post traumatic stress disorder after having nightmares and flashbacks.

He added: “She was constantly looking over her shoulder which resulted in her having time off work.”

Defending, Katherine Pierpoint said Jowett, who had been in the police force for 17 years before resigning three years ago, accepted what he had done was wrong and showed some remorse.

Judge Nicholas Barker said: “You are an individual who can’t take no for an answer. You are persistent and determined and will not be diverted from what you believe to be your right course.

“You began a relationship while working as door staff at a venue in Burnley but almost straight away your true colours became apparent.

“The effects on her have been significant; she’ suffering PTSD, which is something you were diagnosed with while you were in the police.

“You have fallen a long way since the days that you were an officer and in many ways you deserve to go to prison but it seems to me the best course of action will be to suspend the sentence.”

Judge Barker handed Jowett, of Tunnel Street, Darwen, a 16 month sentence, suspended for two years. He was also ordered to carry out 40 days of rehabilitation activity and 100 hours of unpaid work.