This post deals with domestic violence and might be triggering for some readers.
When Queensland police officer Neil Punchard leaked a woman’s address to her violent ex-partner, he wanted to terrify her.
The then-47-year-old had been an officer for a decade, and sent text messages to the man – who was a mate of his – joking about the matter.
“Just tell her you know where she lives and leave it at that. Lol. She will flip,” he wrote in a message that was later sent to Queensland’s Crime Commission.
Women and violence: The hidden numbers. Post continues after video.
But it wasn’t just one leak – it was nine, all sent during a year long period in 2013. Along with the confidential information from the police database, he also gave his friend advice about what to say in a series of derogatory rants about the Gold Coast woman.
In one instance, Punchard drafted an email that was intended to "send to the bitch that will hopefully make her s*** herself."
He also said: "F*** this bitch...is she f***ing delirious? F*** her. No more negotiations."
"You've been quiet for too long. I know you're screaming on the inside. Let loose on her," he further advised.
Due to Punchard's actions, Julie*, which is the name The Guardian has been using to protect the woman, has been living in fear for the last few years.
"Words cannot describe the hurt, the stress and deep anxieties that I suffer on a daily basis because of a police officer in a job expected to protect me, did the exact opposite," she wrote in a statement that was later read out in court.