Serial Complainer Found Not Guilty
UPDATE Tuesday, November 25, 2008
A DISABLED man who had been threatened by youths then used racially derogatory words while speaking to the police has been found not guilty of making offensive phone calls.
John Spare, 59, who is profoundly deaf, used derogatory terms to describe two black men he alleged assaulted him, in two calls to Derbyshire police, on February 5 and 6. 2007.
He pleaded not guilty to both charges and told magistrates he believed his language was not offensive because he had "been brought up with it".
In September 2007, the Evening Telegraph reported how the city's police and council had received hundreds of complaints from Mr Spare.
Last week, a court heard that Mr Spare's words used to describe his alleged attackers – including the term "golliwog" – had led two civilian call-handlers to hang up.
The presiding magistrate Jill Albiston said she was satisfied that Mr Spare's words were not grossly offensive.
Self-styled campaigner John Spare has been warned to stop pestering police and council staff after inundating them with hundreds of complaints.
Officials at Derby City Council have grown so tired of the 58-year-old's calls that they have threatened him with legal action if he makes more than one call a week to them.
Mr Spare said Derby Community Safety Partnership had given him the same ultimatum and Derbyshire police had told him he could be served with an Anti-Social Behaviour Order.
In the past decade, Mr Spare has also targeted several individuals with his barrage of complaints.
Among them was Boulton councillor Frank Leeming, who received up to seven calls a day between summer 2005 and summer 2006, both at home and at work.
Detective Chief Inspector Sam Slack said Mr Spare had exaggerated crimes to police.
But Mr Spare, of Shelmory Close, Allenton, said he would not stop campaigning.