Police respond to claims they wasted taxpayers' money by helping to get a mobility scooter back to an elderly man in Rugby

Published: 10:23Updated: 10:28 Friday 30 August 2019 Share this article

Some members of the public have accused police of wasting taxpayers’ money after they helped an elderly man and his mobility scooter get home safely – and the police have responded.

On Wednesday, August 28, officers assisted an ‘upset and confused’ elderly man outside Rugby Police Station after a member of the public reported concern for the safety of the man. A spokesperson for Operational Patrol Unit (OPU) Warwickshire said: “The male was very upset and confused.

We took the male home to be looked after by his family.” The mobility scooter was loaded aboard a recovery vehicle, where it was driven back to the man’s home. Most of those responding to the police’s Facebook post praised the officers – but some accused the police of wasting taxpayers’ money by using a recovery truck to return the man’s mobility scooter home.

One labelled the use of the truck ‘pathetic’, another attempted to work out how much the recovery would have cost, and several asked why the police did not use a van or a 4×4 to transport the scooter. A spokesperson from OPU Warwickshire replied to the negative comments, stating that the recovery truck was already in the area as it had just transported a damaged police car to Rugby Police Station – and the recovery company then transported the mobility scooter free of charge. The OPU Warwickshire spokesperson wrote: “Following some negative comments made on this post we would like to confirm a few things.

“Attempts were made to return the scooter in a Police Vehicle including a Police Van the scooter was too big and did not fit. We did not feel it was appropriate for an officer to ride it to Brownsover. “BV Commercials had just finished dropping one of our damaged cars back to Rugby Police Station following the pursuit with the stolen van reported in an earlier post.

“As a kind gesture BV Commercials returned the mobility scooter free of charge to help both us and the elderly gentleman.

There were no recovery costs to either the taxpayer or the owner of the scooter.”

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