Attorney J. Bradley Smith answering the question: “Should I talk to the police?”
We recently discussed a U.S. Supreme Court case involving police dogs. The case revolved around how much information concerning the drug-sniffing dog’s abilities prosecutors ought to reveal before their information can be deemed relevant to show probable cause for searching a vehicle.
Building on a similar police dog theme, this week’s post concerns an odd story out of England about one dog’s sought after testimony. The case began when the Crown Prosecution Service in West Midlands, England (basically the English version of the district attorney’s office) asked that a local police department provide a statement from one of the people listed on a police report as a witness to a crime. The prosecutor’s office mistakenly thought the witness’ name was “PC Peach”, assuming it was a pseudonym meant to protect the real person’s identity.
The problem was that “PC Peach” was actually “PD Peach,” with PD standing for “police dog.” Despite being told of the misunderstanding, the prosecutor’s office continued to demand that it receive a statement from “the witness.”
Fed up with what they deemed careless prosecutors, one of Peach’s handlers crafted a statement in the voice of the dog and sent it to the prosecutors. The statement was quite concise and to the point: “I chase him. I bite him. Bad man. He tasty. Good boy. Good boy Peach.” To top it off, the pithy witness statement was then signed with a black paw print.
The prosecutors, not known for their sense of humor, were quite unhappy about the prank. Their unhappiness grew once local newspapers got ahold of the story. After several days of mocking coverage, the prosecutor’s office decided to file a complaint with the local police chief expressing their displeasure.
Though local authorities say the matter is being investigated, they have made clear that it is very unlikely that Peach’s mouthy handler will get into any real trouble for the stunt. The chief said that while it may have been unprofessional, it was ultimately harmless and a way of venting frustration with an overly bureaucratic system.
Arnold & Smith, PLLC is a Charlotte based criminal defense, traffic violation defense and civil litigation law firm servicing Charlotte and the surrounding area. If you or someone you know need legal assistance, please contact Arnold & Smith, PLLC today at (704) 370-2828.
“U.K. police write witness statement in character of Peach the dog,” by Mike Krumboltz, published at News.Yahoo.com.
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