Downham Market man Philip Gale confronted police after they left The Cave Kitchen restaurant
A 61-year-old wound up in court after confronting two police officers who parked over a set of double yellow lines outside his home.
Philip Gale, of Bridge Street in Downham, pleaded guilty to being drunk and disorderly in a public place when he appeared at Lynn Magistrates’ Court on Thursday.
Crown prosecutor Holly Postle told the court that on October 20, the two police officers had just left The Cave Kitchen restaurant in Downham at around 9.30pm when they were approached by Gale.
The officers had just unlocked their vehicle at the time, with Gale starting to point his finger at them while shouting and swearing.
The defendant was asked to calm down, but he proceeded to lunge towards the officers – who felt he was drunk. When they asked him to provide his personal details, he refused.
Gale also turned down the option of a conditional caution for being drunk and disorderly.
Appearing in court unrepresented, Gale told magistrates that he was unaware the two men were police officers.
He said he originally approached them because they had parked their vehicle on a set of double yellow lines outside his home, which is on the same street as the restaurant.
“I was really incensed – I was really angry,” he said.
“If they had said, ‘Sorry mate, we have made a mistake,’ then we could have moved on.
“I thought with their experience they would have given me a bit of time to calm down, but they put me in handcuffs.”
Gale said he turned down the conditional caution because he struggled to understand it, having committed no legal offences since the 1980s.
He also told the court that his neighbour is an ambulance driver, and was frustrated that the police were potentially blocking them in.
“If they were police officers, why were they blocking our driveway?” he said.
“It wouldn't have happened if the police had shown me a badge and said, ‘It won’t happen again’.”
Magistrates, led by Paul Redhead, handed Gale a six-month conditional discharge.
He will also pay legal costs of £50 and a £26 victim surcharge.