Junior cop reprimanded after drunken car fiasco
SENIOR police have reprimanded a junior constable over the handling of a drunken debacle of two men who smashed a car into a Cairns home.
Single mum Lesley Sutton was told by the officer over the phone to make the men extract the vehicle themselves from her wrecked front gate and stairs.
The driver was so heavily intoxicated he passed out on her driveway while his mate struggled to put the car into drive and reverse.
Cairns Police Station officer-in-charge Senior Sergeant James Coate said a police patrol should have been dispatched.
"Things should have been handled better,'' Snr Sgt Coate said.
"He's a junior officer and was unaware the men were intoxicated but a police car should have been sent around.
"His reason not to allow the homeowner to touch it or get it towed was because it was a matter of insurance and she'd most likely be left with the bill.
"And if she got in to move the car herself it could also possibly escalate into conflict and become a matter of personal safety.
"But with the potential damage to the house, the danger hasn't gone away.
"Obviously the homeowner could have done with police assistance.''
Snr Sgt Coate said the constable had been spoken to about the appropriate police response and was unlikely to repeat the mistake.