Asbo for drunken yob who phoned 999 to ask for a lift

Paul Simpson

Paul Simpson

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A NUISANCE caller could be jailed if he continues to pester the 999 service without good cause.

Paul Simpson has been slapped with a three-year anti-social behaviour order (Asbo) after making more than 100 nuisance calls to Northumbria Police and Durham Constabulary in just 12 months.

They have included requests to be given a lift home when he is drunk and foul-mouthed abuse, with more calls placed with the ambulance service where he has also wrongly claimed he needed help.

The 43-year-old Peterlee man could face a stretch in prison if he breaches the terms of his order, which says he must only call 999 if he is in need of urgent attention.

He could also find himself back before a court if he uses the 101 non-emergency line to police without good cause.

Simpson must also stay clear of the Hale Rise area of the town, where he has previously caused a disturbance with his drunken behaviour on a number of occasions.

The order was granted by Peterlee Magistrates’ Court after Durham police put together the application with the backing of Northumbria Police, Durham County Council, the Safer Durham Partnership and Sunderland City Council.

Other rules Simpson, who is originally from Peterlee but now lives in Lyndhurst Road, Sunderland, must stick to are to not to harass, intimidate, threaten or abuse anyone and incite others to commit any act specified by his order.

The action follows a catalogue of problems caused by him over the years when police say he has frequently “abused the emergency call systems resulting in a great drain on resources”.

Sergeant Tracey Whelan, of the East Durham safer neighbourhood unit, said: “Paul Simpson has persistently made a nuisance of himself in both the Durham and Northumbria force areas.

“We have worked closely with our colleagues in Northumbria Police and the Durham and Sunderland councils to obtain this Asbo and we will be actively monitoring the situation to ensure the Asbo conditions are being complied with.”

The order will run until April 2016 and covers all of County Durham and Northumbria Police’s areas.

It follows a previous order, which ran from 2005 to 2007, with the level of Simpson’s bad behaviour dropping until the last year, when repeated calls to the emergency services were made.

Adults who breach Asbos can be fined up to £5,000 or sentenced to five years in prison, or both.