A man recently won $20,000 in court over a dispute involving the police and a glass of beer.
The man and his wife were visiting a pub where they had a relaxing drink together to start the evening. The man then approached the bar to buy a second beer and was taking ‘a few sips’ on his way back to the table when security approached him and asked him to leave.
Upon exiting the pub the man complained to police, who were already at the premises, that he had been assaulted by a security guard. The police showed no sympathy and instead issued him with a ticket for still being on the premises of the hotel. The man then turned and took a step in the direction of his wife.
The police believed he was walking in the direction of the hotel and so they handcuffed him, put him in the back of a police van and kept him at the police station for two hours.
The man took his case to Court where the Judge found that although it was ‘unwise’ for the man to stand close to the premises he had just been kicked out of, the police had no right to arrest him on the basis of ‘preventing’ what they thought was going to be the ‘continuation of a crime’. If the man had actually re-entered the hotel then the police would have been able to lawfully hold him in custody. The man was awarded $20,000 in damages for false imprisonment.
In a world that is increasingly monitored by officials it is important to know your rights. If you believe that you have been involved in a situation where officials have overstepped their boundaries then it is important that you seek legal advice.