Gwent Police pay-out £2,350 to Newport woman
Updated 10:55am Thursday 20th February 2014 in News
A NEWPORT woman was awarded a pay-out of £2,350 after taking a civil action against Gwent Police.
Mother-of-one Kristy Robinson took a case against the force to Cardiff Civil Justice, alleging that she was arrested without due cause after calling police to a domestic incident at her house four years ago.
She claimed she dialled 999 as she was being assaulted at her home in Pillgwenlly on April 12, 2010.
Two officers attended and, Miss Robinson said, found her with a bleeding face and her hair smelt of alcohol. Miss Robinson says this was consistent with what they had been told on the phone that a man had struck her and tipped wine over her.
The man claimed he had been the one assaulted, Miss Robinson said.
After a civil trial, Judge Patrick Curran QC found in favour of Miss Robinson, and Gwent Police were ordered to pay out £2,350 in damages on February 14 this month.
Miss Robinson, now 26, claimed: “I had been to a christening all day where I was a godmother. My last drink was at 11pm and this happened at about 4am or 5am.
“I had DNA taken from me. I’d never been in a cell before and it was frightening.”
She claimed she was kept in the police station for six hours overnight. She was later released without charge.
She added: “At the time I was just saying, ‘Why are you arresting me?’ I couldn’t understand it. It’s only now since the judgment that I can say that’s a bit of closure for me. It wasn’t about the money.”
Her solicitor, Nathan Hennah from HBJ&W Solicitors, welcomed the decision.
A spokesman for Gwent Police said: “Whilst Gwent Police is disappointed, it recognises the judgment of the court in relation to this claim. The arresting officer acted in good faith and in accordance with what she considered right and proper in all the circumstances.
“The officers needed to act quickly in a challenging situation where those present had consumed alcohol, were making counter allegations of assault and where no independent witnesses were present.”
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