Law abiding UK mom has to prove her innocence after police screwup

A mother mistakenly branded a violent junkie must have her fingerprints checked against every unsolved crime in Britain to clear her name.

Amanda Hodgson had a routine crim­inal record check for a job looking after youngsters during breaktimes at her children’s school.

The 36-year-old was expecting the all-clear but was horrified to open a letter claiming she had assaulted police officers and was a recovering heroin addict.

‘When I first read the letter, I didn’t fully understand. I couldn’t work out why I’d been sent all this information,’ Mrs Hodgson said.

‘I was horrified when I realised. It is really embarrassing and I have had to explain to my son that his mum isn’t a criminal and I’m not going to jail.’

Mrs Hodgson only applied to be a welfare assistant at the school after staff said she would be perfect for the job.

But the Criminal Records Bureau sent her the history of a woman with the same name and date of birth – then told Mrs Hodgson, of Preston, it was up to her to prove her innocence.

The CRB investigated but could not ­ensure she was not the person named in the report.

It then asked her to produce her passport and fingerprints.

‘To have my fingerprints taken in the first place is bad enough but then to be told they will be cross-checked against all unsolved crimes is ridiculous,’ she said. ‘I have done nothing wrong.’

A spokesman for the CRB said the Police National Computer had a 99.98 accuracy record. It only asked a person to supply their fingerprints if all other investigations had failed.

‘This may be the only sure way to remove the match,’ said the spokesman.

‘The alternative may result in appropriate information not being released with catastrophic results.’


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