Man handed ASBO after hoax 999 calls

A MAN who claimed he had been sexually assaulted by a police officer was yesterday handed an anti-social behaviour order restricting his ability to make 999 calls.

Keith Ingram, 44, of Prince of Wales Terrace, Scarborough, will be committing a criminal offence and risk a jail sentence if he phones 999, except to report a genuine emergency.

Scarborough Magistrates’ Court was told that Ingram, who it was said had issues with authority figures, had made persistent hoax calls to the North Yorkshire Police switchboard and 999 emergency number.

In May, he was convicted of making an offensive phone call to North Yorkshire Police after he threatened to murder a police officer, after alleging that he had been sexually assaulted in custody at Scarborough Police Station.

Kathryn Reeve, prosecuting, said: “He is well known to the local police. He has a reputation for targeting individuals.

“Members of the public say they do not have a problem with the defendant. He focuses on and targets individuals and can easily maintain normal relationships with people he isn’t targeting.

“He is able to present himself as no risk to the community. He knows what he is doing when he targets people, groups or organisations.”

Magistrates were also told a restraining order against Ingram had recently been granted by the courts after a family claimed he had subjected them to inappropriate behaviour.

When the police first applied for the ASBO, they had asked that five separate conditions were included.

However, after a series of court hearings, it was agreed that just one condition would be imposed.

Marcus Topham, mitigating, denied that his client had targeted people but said he had reacted to circumstances.

He said the abusive phone calls made by Ingram had been the result of his frustration at the police not dealing with his complaints.

He added: “He accepts that as a rational person he should not respond in the manner he has done in the past.

“He has been at his wits’ end with the manner that North Yorkshire Police have responded to him.

“He has not been targeting individual officers. He accepts making the ASBO with the condition in place.”

Chairman of the Bench Duncan Webster agreed that the ASBO would be imposed and will last for a period of two years. He added: “We are satisfied that you have a history of anti-social behaviour. It is necessary to protect 999 operators from abusive calls by you.”

After the order was imposed, Ingram said: “The way the police and the courts have run this country for 42 years is a disgrace and they should all be sacked.”