A decorated former detective who used his police-issued Glock as a sex toy during a rendezvous at Kingscliff police station has avoided jail for misconduct.
Instead, Mark Garner will complete his 20-month sentence by way of an intensive corrections order (ICO), meaning he serve his time in the community and not behind bars.
Garner’s relationship with the woman, who cannot be named, began after she came into the Tweed Heads police station in June 2011 to say she had been sexually assaulted.
The woman, who was known to police for having mental health issues, was hospitalised shortly after.
In the weeks that followed, the relationship which began as platonic soon intensified, culminating in the night at Kingscliff police station in September 2011.
Garner, who was supposed to be a general duty supervisor at Tweed Heads, snuck the woman into the closed station where they had sex in various locations.
It was during their encounter that the woman used his police service Glock as a sex toy.
The woman also took photos of their encounter and uploaded them onto her laptop which was later stolen from her apartment.
In a bid to retrieve the incriminating images, Garner inappropriately accessed the police database to get information on the suspected thief.
Judge Ross Letherbarrow said Garner had clearly shown ‘significant errors in judgment’ when he sentenced him to 20-months imprisonment in February.
But he immediately referred the former officer for an ICO assessment, saying Garner had faced many traumatising incidents in the force and was unlikely to reoffend.
Garner returned to Sydney’s District Court on Wednesday where the ICO was approved.
His sentence will begin on April 29. [AAP]