Ex-cop admits misuse of data

She accessed police computers for info on romantic rivals
2013-08-08T00:00:00Z 2013-08-08T07:46:18Z Ex-cop admits misuse of dataPatrick McNamara Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star
August 08, 2013 12:00 am  • 

A former Tucson police officer has pleaded guilty to computer tampering for using police databases to find personal information about romantic rivals.

Andrea Middleton pleaded guilty to two counts stemming from a June indictment charging her with three felony counts of computer tampering.

Investigation documents from the Tucson Police Department show Middleton harassed two women via telephone and text messages over the course of several days in November.

The report says Middleton inappropriately used her access to criminal justice databases to acquire the women's personal information, then aggressively queried them about their relationships with a fellow police officer with whom Middleton once had a relationship.

One of the women told police investigators Middleton used profanity and called her names during an exchange.

The woman told investigators Middleton asked her not to tell anyone about the call.

In the report, police investigators say at least one of Middleton's statements could be considered a threat.

One of the women, whom the Star is not identifying, told police Middleton said she found the woman's phone number and address on the Internet.

In addition to the criminal charges against her, Middleton was found to have violated numerous police policies and general orders.

Middleton had four prior disciplinary actions on her record from her seven-year career with TPD.

In 2006, she was reprimanded for not reporting a fight involving a fellow officer.

In 2010, she received a 40-hour suspension for failing to provide assistance to another officer. The investigation report said Middleton did not respond to the call for assistance because she did not want her then-boyfriend, a fellow officer, to find out she had been on a call with a different male officer.

Also in 2010, she was suspended for 20 hours for not reporting a domestic violence incident involving her and the fellow officer with whom she had a relationship. The same year, she was involved in an on-duty car crash that was determined her fault.

Middleton resigned the day she was indicted after having been on administrative leave since November 2012.

In her resignation letter she wrote resigning was her only alternative because of "continuous sexual, emotional and physical abuse," which she said she was subjected to both on and off duty - abuse she said she reported, but which the department ignored.

Middleton is scheduled for sentencing on September 13.

Contact reporter Patrick McNamara at 573-4241 or pmcnamara@azstarnet.com. On Twitter @pm929.

Copyright 2014 Arizona Daily Star. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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