Pc lied after he ran a red light
A SOUTH Yorkshire Police officer who invented a fake road pursuit to avoid being prosecuted for driving through a red light has escaped an immediate jail sentence.
Wayne Bartlett, aged 31, of Butterill Drive, Armthorpe, was working as a PC and driving a marked police car when he failed to stop for a red light on Balby Road, Doncaster, in March this year.
He was flashed by a police camera at the traffic lights on the junction with Belmont Avenue.
Sheffield Crown Court heard that, after the camera flashed, Bartlett, who was with two other officers at the time, grabbed his radio and reported a 'failure to stop.'
He knew that if he said he was pursuing a vehicle, he would be exempt from prosecution.
When he returned to the station that night he claimed a vehicle had failed to stop when requested.
As a result he had pursued it, driving through the red light in the process.
He said the pursuit had been short and that no criminal proceedings were brought against the driver.
The information was logged by a senior officer and no further action was taken.
But a few days later, the officers who had been passengers in the car told a senior colleague that Bartlett had made up the pursuit report.
When he was questioned by his supervising officer, Bartlett, who has two children aged seven and four, admitted what he'd done straight away.
He pleaded guilty to perverting the course of justice at his first court appearance.
In mitigation, the court heard Bartlett had an exemplary record with the police and with the army.
He had served as a soldier for 10 years before joining the police force in 2004.
His actions were described as "wholly out of character" and "a momentary act of silliness".
He was also said to be utterly ashamed and knew he only had himself to blame, the court was told.
Bartlett, whose wife is also a South Yorkshire police officer, resigned from the force in advance of the court case because he knew he would face the sack once he was convicted.
He now works as a lecturer at Doncaster College.
Sentencing Bartlett to three months in prison, suspended for 12 months, His Honour Judge Goldsack QC, the honorary recorder of Sheffield, told him he had been "extremely foolish".
He added: "Offences such as this are, by definition, serious, and almost as a matter of course pass the custody threshold.
"What aggravates your case further is you were a serving police officer at the time but your case also shows the effect that powerful mitigation can have on your sentence," said the judge.
Bartlett was ordered to complete 100 hours unpaid work and to pay court costs of 263.
Chief Superintendent Bob Varey of South Yorkshire Police said: "This offence was brought to our attention and as a result was professionally investigated.
"The investigation resulted in Wayne Bartlett appearing in court and being sentenced. We treat such offences seriously and any that are brought to our attention will be dealt with accordingly."
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