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Thread: Drama in latest evidence in robberies trial

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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2010

    Default Drama in latest evidence in robberies trial

    Policeman had to jump clear in roadblock drama court is told

    A HIGHLAND policeman told a trial at Wick today how he was forced to
    jump out of the way as a car roared towards him on the Mallaig to Ft
    William road, early one morning.
    The drama happened after Sgt Andrew Cooper signalled the driver to stop
    at a roadblock he was manning along with colleague, Constable Ian
    Morrison, near Drumsallie, on October 12, 2007.
    The road block was set up, after a break-in at Glenuig post shop and
    post office, the latest in a string of robberies in the Highlands and
    the north-east. The two officers were in uniform and were wearing
    high viv gear. Their marked police vehicle's blue light was flashing.
    Accused of committing the robberies, are John Hind, 54, from Colne in
    Lancashire and Matthew Peters, 40,from Bournemouth. They deny the
    break-ins and stealing cash totalling 34,497 and stock worth 10,508.
    They also pleaded not guilty to assaulting Constable Cooper and driving
    a car at him to the danger of his life.
    Sgt Cooper. said that another visibility measure he took, was to shine
    his torch on the arm he had held up in the normal ‘stop’ signal
    position. The car was approaching at speed, which he didn’t regard as
    unusual given the hour.
    It slowed down and, at first, he thought it was going to come to a
    halt. But then he heard the engine being revved and the vehicle
    came “racing towards me, at high speed”
    Sgt Cooper said: “It had no intention of stopping and I remember
    thinking that if I didn’t get out of the way it would strike me. About
    that, time I heard Constable Morrison shout-‘He’s not going to stop’!”.
    Sgt Cooper said that as the car shot past, he identified it as a red
    Mitsubishi and was able to read its registration plate.
    Pressed by advocate Alan Macleod for Hind, as to what he thought would
    have happened if he had not jumped out of the way, Sgt Cooper replied:
    “I honestly don’t know, because it didn’t happen. This vehicle would
    not have been able to stop. One of us had to take evasive action.”
    Mr Macleod: “Had you decided to play chicken with this vehicle, it may
    have moved into the other carriageway.”
    Sgt Cooper: “It may have done.”
    Mr Macleod: “You moved into the other
    carriageway and the vehicle drove past you. I is speculation but is it fair
    to say that it was not the intention of the other driver to cause you injury but to
    get past the roadblock?”
    Sgt Cooper: “Very possibly”.
    His colleague, Constable Ian Morrison said that they had been tasked to
    set up the road block following the break-in at Glenuig and said they
    were “highly visible”. They had checked a number of vehicles after but
    things had gone quiet after the time went into the early hours.
    They got out of their 4 x 4 Nissan Pathfinder and Sergeant Cooper
    stepped into the middle of the road. The approaching car slowed but
    went into a high gear about 50 yards from the roadblock.”
    Constable Morrison said: “I shouted to Sergeant Cooper and he jumped
    out of the way. The car shot past him.”
    Senior fiscal depute, David Barclay, prosecuting, asked: “If he had not
    jumped, he would have remained in the path of this vehicle?”
    Constable Morrison: “Yes he would have been”.
    Both police officers said that were unable to say how many people were
    in the car or who they were. They got into their police vehicle and
    gave chase, radioing ahead to Ft William colleagues who took over the
    pursuit because they had a faster vehicle.”
    Earlier, Detective Callum Macleod told the trial at Wick Sheriff Court that
    during a surveillance operation, he saw two figures get out of a vehicle and
    make their way towards the Glenuig post office in south-west Inverness-shire
    Shortly afterwards, he heard the sound of cracking wood and saw a torches being
    shone inside. Then he observed the figures running from the
    building into the nearby hill. DS Macleod said that on investigation
    he discovered that the post office had been broken into. A window had
    been removed and he recovered an axe and a wrecking bar, from outside.
    the premises. Inside, the safe was found on a counter inside.
    Cross-examined he said that he did not pursue the figures because
    It was dark, the terrain was unfamiliar and the weather was poor.
    The trial, which is being conducted by Sheriff Andrew Berry,
    Last edited by Nwicker60; 22-Aug-11 at 19:42.

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