Bath & North East Somerset Council has welcomed the outcome of a court case in which a member of the public was prosecuted for assaulting a member of its staff.
Lamia Messoud, 31, of Manor Road, Trowbridge, appeared at Bath Magistrates Court on Thursday 20 April where she pleaded guilty to common assault. The charge related to an incident involving a member of staff from Bath & North East Somerset Council in Henry Street, Bath, on 12th December 2016.
The member of staff was a Civil Enforcement Officer who was attempting to verify the validity of a disabled person’s Blue Badge.
She was fined £100 and ordered to pay costs of £620 as well as a victim surcharge of £30.
Miss Messoud is still due to appear at Bath Magistrates Court on Monday 24 April in relation to misuse of a Blue Badge.
A spokesperson for Bath & North East Somerset Council said: “We welcome the outcome of this prosecution and hope it will send a message to anyone who may think that this type of behaviour is acceptable.
“The Council will not tolerate incidents of this nature or any assaults on its staff, who are carrying out their civic duties. We will work closely with police to ensure such incidents are thoroughly investigated and offenders are dealt with robustly.”
Bath & North East Somerset Council has been carrying out operations which focus on the misuse of Blue Badges since November 2014 and has prosecuted a number of individuals.
The spokesperson added: “Blue Badges must only be used when the badge holder is driving, being driven somewhere or being picked up. They should not be used by anyone who is not entitled to do so and anyone found to be using a blue badge fraudulently will be at risk of prosecution.
“We would urge residents who suspect a Blue Badge is being used fraudulently to report it to our Parking Services Team. When reporting please ensure as many details as possible from the badge on display, including name, serial number and expiry date. Do not approach anyone you suspect of misusing a badge.”
The maximum fine for anyone convicted of misusing a Blue Badge is £1,000 or even a custodial sentence if the badge is fake or stolen.
Anyone who suspects a Blue Badge is being used fraudulently can report it to Parking Services by calling 01225 477 133/4, or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information on blue badges, visit http://www.bathnes.gov.uk/services/parking-and-travel/accessible-parking/blue-badge