Drink is root cause of another busy festive period in police cells

Insp Paul Timmins in the exercise yard at Spalding Police Station.
Insp Paul Timmins in the exercise yard at Spalding Police Station.
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WAKING up in a police cell on either Christmas Day or New Year’s Day is the last place most people would want to be.

But while the majority of South Holland’s residents peacefully enjoyed the festive season, a few found themselves on the wrong side of the law.

Grim place: Our reporter Sharon Pell experiences one of the cells at Spalding Police Station.

Grim place: Our reporter Sharon Pell experiences one of the cells at Spalding Police Station.

Between 6pm on Christmas Eve and midnight on Boxing Day, 19 people were arrested.

Of these, three were drink drivers who were all over the limit and charged.

“One of these was one I arrested on Christmas Day,” said Insp Paul Timmins. “He failed to stop for me and was pursued through streets of Spalding for two miles before stopping.

“He was more than three times over the limit, was a disqualified driver and had no insurance.

Spalding police's Insp Paul Timmins with breath test equipment.

Spalding police's Insp Paul Timmins with breath test equipment.

“He could not stand up when arrested. He spent 20 hours in custody before being charged.”

Insp Timmins said several others arrested were heavily “in drink”.

They included a 39-year-old man who was cautioned for assault, who was described as well behaved in custody but spent six hours in a cell, an “argumentative” 23-year-old man charged with being drunk and disorderly and a 25-year-old man who was given a penalty notice for minor public order offences.

Two other men were said to be “aggressive” in custody.

One of these, a 29-year-old bailed for assault, had to be taken straight to a cell for officer safety. He spent 11 hours there.

Insp Timmins said: “Christmas Eve in to Christmas Day was the busiest, but then we had a relatively quiet Boxing Day.

“The disorder and assault prisoners were all as a result of heavy intoxication where, I would suggest, their common sense and judgement had escaped them.”

On New Year’s Eve, Insp Phil Taylor said there were a lot of “good spirited individuals” seeing in the New Year in and around Spalding.

Several calls were made about fireworks being let off.

Insp Phil Taylor said: “Eleven arrests were made from the beginning of the day for a variety of routine things including criminal damage, absent without leave from the armed forces, thefts, public nuisance, section 136 mental health and one positive breath test.

“There were a number of persons who were detained and dealt with for public order offences by fixed penalty ticket and by utilising a power to cause a person to leave a specified area when they have engaged in unacceptable behaviour which is drink related, these were used appropriately for the small number who were able to be dealt with. “There were a large number of persons who clearly consumed a lot of alcohol and an ambulance was called for two young ladies who were suffering fits.”