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This article was reproduced with the kind permission
of the British Broadcasting Corporation

 

 

Friday, 16 November 2007, 14:59 GMT
Bogus flood firefighter sentenced


A man who impersonated a fire officer at the height of the floods crisis in Gloucestershire has been given a three-year conditional discharge.

Peter Jennings, from Alvina Lane, Kirkdale, Liverpool, dressed in a stolen fire service uniform and sent pumps to a bar in Tewkesbury.

The 49-year-old was caught when a firefighter from Merseyside recognised him on television and exposed the fake.

Jennings admitted the impersonation to magistrates in Stroud, Gloucestershire.

He pleaded guilty to three charges of obstructing or hindering an employee of the fire service during the flooding in July.

I came down with good intentions
Peter Jennings

He also changed his plea and admitted stealing two white helmets and a tunic. He was ordered to pay £100 costs.

Outside court, Jennings said: "I give my apologies to the whole of Tewkesbury. I came down to here to help and not to hinder.

"I came down with good intentions and I've paid the price."

Prosecuting, David Nicholas said Jennings risked lives after sending three fire engines to a flooded Tewkesbury pub.

Emergency services were fighting to save an electricity sub station from being submerged at the time.

He had driven down from his Merseyside home in a car fitted with its own emergency blue flashing light.

"He looked for all intents and purposes, like a station officer," Mr Nicholas said.

Jennings looked authentic and even high-ranking officers took him at face value.

Mr Nicholas said Jennings had been obsessed with the fire service and joined the Fire Museum in Crosby, Merseyside, in 2004.