Angry resident threatened with arrest over fake parking tickets

Parking notice

The unofficial notice that could lead to a charge of impersonation of a police officer. - Credit: Suffolk Police

Police have warned that a frustrated resident who issued fake parking tickets in streets near Stowmarket railway station that they could be arrested.

The person responsible for the illegal leaflets is being warned they could be arrested for impersonating a police officer after the Suffolk Constabulary masthead was used on the top of the notices.

They appeared on cars in the Hamilton Way area near the station - and threatened people who had parked on pavements with a £1,000 fine for obstruction. But by using the police masthead to make it look like an official letter, whoever produced them fell foul of the Police Act 1966.

Parking enforcement in Stowmarket is undertaken by West Suffolk Council's community parking enforcement officers working on behalf of Mid Suffolk Council.

The police can only get involved in parking issues if vehicles are blocking the highway or pavement.

A Suffolk police spokesman said: "Police guidance is that the officer will make an evidence based decision as to whether there is an obstruction offence.

"Should a situation arise where an electric wheelchair, double child pushchair or similar width is unable to pass the vehicle without going onto the road then an obstruction offence exists. If such carriages can continue past the parked car without going onto the road then there is no offence and no police action will be taken.

"In all potential obstruction incidents, Suffolk Constabulary recommend that officers attend the location and use their judgement rather than relying on any written or telephone report.

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"While parking is an issue that is regularly raised to police and we acknowledge the frustration of some members of the public, it needs to be made clear that the key policing priorities relating to criminality do need to take precedence.

“With such a topic there is a collective community responsibility here for everyone to show consideration to pedestrians. We always urge all motorists to park legally, considerately and responsibly, and to think about the effect their behaviour may have on others.”

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