Elyse Hibbs: Prison nurse jailed for flirting with inmate

A prison nurse has been jailed after making

Elyse Hibbs admitted misconduct in public office and was jailed for six months (Image: Wales News)

A prison nurse who exchanged “flirty” messages and phone calls with an inmate has been jailed.

Elyse Hibbs, from Manchester, admitted to wrongdoing in public office by having an “inappropriate relationship” with the prisoner while working at HMP Parc in Bridgend.

The 25-year-old, who the court heard was “manipulated” and “penetrated too deeply” by the unnamed delay, sobbed as she was sentenced to six months in prison at Cardiff Crown Court on Tuesday.

Judge Tracey Lloyd-Clarke, Cardiff’s clerk, told Hibbs that despite her apparent remorse, the offense was “too serious” for her term to be suspended.

The court heard how Hibbs had worked at the B-category prison in South Wales since September 2018 and met the inmate as she was treating him medically.

After concerns were raised about the behavior of the inmates, he was transferred to HMP Manchester in May 2021.

A month later in June, the inmate used his mother and a friend to track Hibbs on Instagram.

After Hibbs gave them her cell phone number, she and the inmate began having three-way calls, during which his friend “held two phones together so they could talk to each other.”

Matthew Cobbe, prosecutor, said that over the next five weeks and five days the inmate “nurtured” his relationship with Hibbs.

They exchanged numerous texts and calls – some of which were made over the prison phone and recorded.

“The calls between the defendant and the inmate were flirtatious,” Mr Cobbe said. “They talked about the prison and the prison staff.

“He says he loves her and she says she loves him too. He told her he wanted to thank her for looking after him at the Parc.”

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The court heard Hibbs was “manipulated” by the unnamed delay and went “in too deep” (Image: PA)

The couple also spoke about how the inmate had an illegal mobile phone and the inmate’s opinion on corruption in the prison, the court was told.

Mr Cobbe said: “The conversations contain several indications that the defendant is asking the inmate not to contact her, yet contact is continuing.

“They also show that the inmate thought very little of the defendant, he was clearly manipulating her.

“It is quite clear that their conversations were totally inappropriate.”

Hibbs had taken sick leave in early June and resigned from her post on July 6.

On July 13, she was arrested after investigators found Hibbs’ phone number on his approved inmate call log.

Hibbs has since been dropped from the Nursing and Midwifery Council.

She claimed she was “taken advantage of” and didn’t feel like she could stop communicating because she felt “threatening” by the inmate.

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The judge told Hibbs the offense was ‘too serious’ to stay the sentence (Image: Wales News)

Hibbs’ defense attorney Adam Sharp said the contact took place when the inmate was in another prison and his client was not benefiting financially or otherwise, nor was she helping organized crime.

Mr Sharp said: “The misconduct wasn’t face to face, it wasn’t even in physical proximity to each other.”

And he called Hibbs, who was 23 at the time of the crime, “young, suggestible and relatively inexperienced” and “emotionally vulnerable”.

“She has expressed remorse for her actions, which go beyond self-interest,” he added, calling for her sentence to be suspended.

However, Judge Lloyd-Clarke said: “You knew what you were doing was wrong, you had an education, but even so, you formed an emotional connection with this inmate.

“They did not report the first contact despite a colleague’s advice.

“You initially had a flirtatious relationship, you did not report ongoing contact and you did not report that this inmate had an unlawful device on him and in custody.

“He was left with the potential ability to manipulate you while you were still working in a prison.

“Although you are young, you were in a position of responsibility as a nurse and as a prison officer.”

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https://metro.co.uk/2022/10/18/elyse-hibbs-prison-nurse-jailed-over-flirty-calls-with-inmate-17590284/ Elyse Hibbs: Prison nurse jailed for flirting with inmate

Justin Scacco

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