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Strange Question -- Help needed.


Fleming63
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Hi Guys,

This is a strange one.

Basically at work over a week ago another member of staff knocked into my vehicle causing minor damage.

She made off without trying to find out who owned the vehicle and i would not have found out had she not been seen doing so by another colleague.

He came into where i worked and asked about the van I said it was mine and then he told me the story.

Through our security system i discovered who it was.

I then approached her and asked her for a quite word, at this stage I identified myself as a SC and showed my warrant card to confirm this.

I explained to her that she was seen damaging my vehicle with her own vehicle, and she had left the area WITHOUT trying to find out who was the owner of the vehicle.

I did tell her I would not look to involve management, i just wanted the damages paid for.

She said she would pay for the Damages, but would not admit guilt..

Then last week management asked for a statement, which i did and explained everything i did.

On Friday just gone, I was called to a meeting where a senior HR person said what i did was wrong and the person involved was making a complaint, as she had become upset after speaking to me( If she had done this on the road and was dealing with Police Officer outside of work what would she do?????? Cry, doubt it..)

she also went on to tell me she had called Professional standards of the local constabulary (NOT MINE AS I WORK IN A DIFFERENT AREA) they said i should not have shown my warrant card.

Showing my warrant card I should not really have done but i was not in uniform and I was confirming to her what i had said "I am a SC" (I have discussed this with my team Sgt)

The point is the wonderful company i work for is now going to disipline me for what i did!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Basically they are doing this because i identified my self as a Special Constable, as i was dealing with damage to my vehicle.

POINTS TO KNOW:

1 Car Park area of a Holiday centre...Public pay to come and stay, but no general public access

2 The offender made away from the scene without trying to identify the owner of the vehicle.

3 The vehicle damaged was mine and i am a current serving SC and i used my warrant card to ID myself but DID NOT use any police powers or equipment.

Any feed back or if anyone has dealt with something similar please let me know

Thanks Guys.

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go through the appeals process if you do end up getting a disciplinary

Make a complaint about her to local force about her leaving the scene of an accident and bug them every other day to make sure that a report is sent.

at least thats what id do!!

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Make a complaint about her to local force about her leaving the scene of an accident and bug them every other day to make sure that a report is sent.

I'd also ask for any disciplinary hearing to be put on hold pending the outcome of any criminal proceedings against her. Who knows, maybe they might forget about the disciplinary.

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from what you said it's a public place

"including any highway and other permises or place to which at material time the public have or are permitted to have access, whether by payment or otherwise "

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Well, to be fair, there was no need to badge out (and i think you realise that now!), and it could be claimed you were using your position of authority to try and intimidate her into paying.

I'm not saying you did, but be prepared for that to be thrown at you.

To play it by the book, you should have either gone down the "I am a MOP and I am reasonably asking you to pay for the damages to the car" route, or you should have reported the crime for another police officer to deal with. That's why police officers aren't suppose to investigate crimes they have a personal link to - it avoids any messiness like in this situation where she can claim you abused your position of authority to pressure her into paying the damages.

Personally, I'd accept that the badging out wasn't really necessary, but explain that you identified yourself as a SC merely to add legal weight to your explanation of the law, it had nothing to do with the compensation.

Keep calm (and professional!), as you have to explain your actions as a police officer. You badged out, and were therefore on duty.

You could certainly request disciplinary action for her damaging your van and breaking the law (I know I would! :D), but you'll still have to explain your actions.

Edited by Rorschach
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As soon as I saw this:

at this stage I identified myself as a SC and showed my warrant card to confirm this.

I thought to myself "I bet this goes Pete Tong". Easy to say with hindsight, but there really was no need for you to have done this. Mixing an SC with your normal work in a personal manner is just asking for trouble and I'm not surprised the wheels have come off.

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I did tell her I would not look to involve management, i just wanted the damages paid for.

She said she would pay for the Damages, but would not admit guilt..

An honest opinion; you have an independent witness and the other driver agreed to pay for the damage why were you pushing for an admission of guilt?

Badging out was a mistake and could be perceived as bullying. Personally I would have let my insurance company sort it out.

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In what capacity did you view the CCTV, as a constable or would you normally be able to check CCTV to see who damaged your car (ie are you security or do you have responsibility for CCTV)?

I am not criticising, I had a railway manager try to give me pictures she had taken on her Iphone (from CCTV monitor) concerning somebody making off after her car was damaged. I duly declined to look and took crime report details and separately requested the CCTV tapes myself, thus avoiding her any professional embarassment.

You can see how using your position to access information relating to your own property can look unprofessional, so in future, report to locals (badge out to them and explain you can't deal due to obvious conflict of interest) and you would be totally fine.

I do however find it unfair that you will likely be disciplined by your HR and someone will probably have a word with you from PSD, where in fact you were the victim.

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What I would have done:

1. Got the name of the person who informed me.

2. Checked the CCTV footage and request a download/downloaded a copy for myself.

3. Approach management and report the matter.

At no point would I have identified myself as a Police Officer - for the now (obvious) reasons.

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I then approached her and asked her for a quite word, at this stage I identified myself as a SC and showed my warrant card to confirm this.

A tough lesson to learn but a good one for future reference.

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I think the merits (or lack of) identifying yourself have been gone over so I won't go over old ground.

With regards to the disciplinary, I agree with BazzaBill. Ask for it to be put on hold whilst you commence criminal proceedings against her. It seems a little silly for the woman to have made a to-do about the whole thing seeing as she was clearly in the wrong.

It surprises me to hear that this has flipped around on to yourself, I don't know how that's possible if the situation was exactly as described. Perhaps her and the HR employee have a relationship?

A few people have said that they would go straight to management with the footage; I think the majority of people would in fact have approached her to discuss the issue first as it's the logical first step. Then if no movement, go to management and insurance company with CCTV.

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I think the merits (or lack of) identifying yourself have been gone over so I won't go over old ground.

With regards to the disciplinary, I agree with BazzaBill. Ask for it to be put on hold whilst you commence criminal proceedings against her. It seems a little silly for the woman to have made a to-do about the whole thing seeing as she was clearly in the wrong.

It surprises me to hear that this has flipped around on to yourself, I don't know how that's possible if the situation was exactly as described. Perhaps her and the HR employee have a relationship?

A few people have said that they would go straight to management with the footage; I think the majority of people would in fact have approached her to discuss the issue first as it's the logical first step. Then if no movement, go to management and insurance company with CCTV.

Yes you'd probably have a word with her but i'd ensure the CCTV was downloaded first of all (evidence of the offence that is indisputable) and informed her in no uncertain terms she would be paying for the damages or I would take the matter to management and if necessary the police.

at NO POINT (again) would I have whipped the warrant out - totally not needed...

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Meeting with HR tomorrow,

From what my line manager says it sounds like it has turned into a witch hunt.

Not sure if there is any relation between the person who done the damage and any management but it is possible where this place is.

I know the warrant card was a bad idea, but it was never intended to be anything apart form this is me.

Tomorrows meeting will be dealt with in a calm and professional manner from me no matter what they say.

Thanks for the reply guys.

PS only thing that will worry me is something like this would effect my application to the Police down the line.

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Meeting with HR tomorrow,

From what my line manager says it sounds like it has turned into a witch hunt.

Not sure if there is any relation between the person who done the damage and any management but it is possible where this place is.

I know the warrant card was a bad idea, but it was never intended to be anything apart form this is me.

Tomorrows meeting will be dealt with in a calm and professional manner from me no matter what they say.

Thanks for the reply guys.

PS only thing that will worry me is something like this would effect my application to the Police down the line.

dont even consider going in with HR until they have made clear what the precise allegation is, they are not supposed to go on a fishing trip

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Yeah dont go into the meeting with HR untill they tell you what the allegation is. Are you taking a Rep or independent person in with you?

I would also like suggested i would ask for it to be put on hold till criminal investigations have taken place, it might make her think twice about going ahead with it.

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