Man arrested after taking photo of police driverHe took photo when PC ignored road signs

21 August 2008

A man was arrested and kept for five hours in a cell after he took a photo of a police officer who ignored road signs and reversed up a one-way street.

Plumber Andrew Carter was walking up South Road, in Bristol, when he saw a police van reverse up the one-way street and stop near a fish and chip shop.

It later emerged the two officers went into the shop to look at CCTV footage relating to an earlier incident, but when Mr Carter, 44, confronted them with his camera he was met with abuse.

Reversed

He told the Bristol Evening Post: 'I had nearly been run over the previous day by a car going through the no entry signs so I was a bit miffed when a police van did the same thing.

'He reversed into the road rather than going round the block and coming in the other way, like the rest of us have to.

'I pointed at the sign and said "no entry" to the driver who swore and said "police business". I went home and got my camera. I took a photo of the van and then a picture of the officer, through the window of the chip shop.

'He came running out, smashed the camera from my hand. I was put in handcuffs and he said I had 'assaulted' him with my camera and that I was also being arrested for resisting arrest and being drunk and disorderly.

'This was complete nonsense. They bundled me into the back of the van. I offered to delete the photos but the male officer was having none of it.'

Cell

Mr Carter was put in a cell at Broadbury Road police station in the Knowle area of Bristol where he was kept for five hours until he was released on bail.

He returned to answer bail the following week with his solicitor and was kept at the station for a further five hours.

He was never charged with any offence.

Disciplinary tribunal

Mr Carter made a formal complaint of wrongful arrest against PC Aqil Farooq - who faced a disciplinary tribunal in July.

Pc Farooq apologised to Mr Carter for the incident in January and he later received a letter from Rob Beckley, deputy chief constable of Avon and Somerset Police.

A spokesman for Avon and Somerset Police today confirmed Mr Carter was now pursuing a compensation claim for wrongful arrest.

He said: 'A disciplinary procedure was followed and an apology was issued to Mr Carter. But as he is pursuing a claim we cannot comment further at this stage.'

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