TWO lying cops who had their neighbor’s car towed away in a bitter argument in the parking lot have been castigated by their bosses.
Sergeant Samantha Hague and PC Christopher Bowker have been ‘coerced at the end of their tether’ into a long-running row over a space outside their home.
But a Greater Manchester Police Disciplinary Board ruled the couple, who were in a relationship and lived together, had lied in an effort to have a car seized and towed.
Now the couple have been told they are on their last chance with the force after the panel found gross misconduct.
Sgt Hague and PC Bowker had returned home after a night out to find their neighbour’s VW Golf was “intentionally obstructing” one of their bays, the Manchester Evening News reports.
PC Bowker managed to get around the car to park his Mini – then called the police, saying he and Sgt Hague were due out for work soon.
He asked for help removing the car – and when asked if he knew who owned the Golf, he said he didn’t.
Several hours later, Sgt Hague called the 101 non-emergency line to say she was still stuck and had been unable to drive out to work.
Instead, she claimed she took an elevator.
The neighbor’s car was then towed away.
Most read in The Irish Sun
She later told the panel that she made the call before leaving the house and ended up taking her boyfriend’s car to the station.
However, it was eventually discovered that she had lied “in order to exaggerate the difficulty” it had caused her “out of frustration”.
She was found to have “shown a lack of integrity”, while PC Bowker also lied saying he didn’t know who owned the Golf.
However, the panel ruled the neighbor acted in a “provocative” manner that “would have caused embarrassment to any reasonable person”.
It was also found that neither officer planned to lie in advance.
The report says the pair acted in a “deliberate and intentional” manner – but they were “fully within their rights to call the police and every right to expect action to be taken”.
“Where they got it wrong was withholding information about the identity of the owner,” the report said.
“The panel was satisfied that neither PS Hague nor PC Bowker posed a threat to the public they serve.
“They each told a lie, under emotional circumstances, of a kind that did not lead the panel to conclude that either officer tended to be dishonest or to lie.”
Although there is no information on the configuration of parking spaces in the report, the rules are clear when it comes to leaving a vehicle outside another person’s home.
There is no law to say you have the right to park outside your own home – unless you have a designated parking spot.
In terms of street parking, anyone is allowed to park in front of your house, as long as there are no parking restrictions.
WATCH THIS PLACE
If your street issues parking permits, anyone with one will be able to park anywhere along the road.
Drivers may be tempted to save space outside their homes by using a wheelie bin or cones.
However, this may be considered a road obstruction and you may end up being reported to the local council or the police.
There’s a weird loophole that means anyone can park in your driveway.
There is no law prohibiting someone from parking in your driveway, even if you have not authorized them to do so.
The driver of the car can be considered a trespass on your property.
However, trespassing is classified as a civil offense and not a criminal one, so the police will have no power to make an arrest.
If a car parks in your route, it is technically on private land, meaning local councils cannot enforce anything.
Local councils have the right to move abandoned cars onto both public and private property, but if the car is insured, taxed, has a valid inspection and is not in an unsafe condition it is unlikely that the council moves it off private land. .