Petrol station video nasty for Mow Cop motorist
A DRIVER received a letter accusing him of leaving a filling station without paying for £40 of petrol – 10 minutes before he had actually bought £50 of fuel.
Ben Sumbland, of Mow Cop, visited the Shell Garage in Newcastle Road, Talke, and paid for £50.01 of petrol, plus a magazine, on October 18.
Three days later a police letter was hand-delivered to Ben's grandparent's address, accusing him of leaving the forecourt without paying for £41.07 of fuel.
But a receipt shows that Ben, who works for his grandfather's aggregates business, SJB Sumbland & Co, had paid for the petrol at 7.44pm. According to the police letter, he had left without paying at 7.35pm.
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Ben, aged 23, said: "At that time I would have still been driving to the petrol station.
"I am a regular at the Shell Garage in Talke. I probably fill up there two or three times a week.
"I paid £50.01 for the petrol and I bought a BMW magazine. Luckily, they gave me a receipt, because usually they don't.
"That happened on the Wednesday, then on the Saturday, my grandad telephoned me to say that this summons had arrived through the door to say I had driven off without paying for petrol.
"I don't know what has gone on, because the time and the amount is different. The receipt says I was there 10 minutes later.
"The summons had been hand delivered to my grandparent's because I was in the work van, a Renault Kangoo.
"I had actually thrown the receipt away but luckily I actually managed to find it is the bin.
"As soon as I knew about it I went to Newcastle Police Station with my granddad.
"Even the police officer on duty said it was funny."
Ben's grandfather Jim Sumbland, aged 63, of Mow Cop, said: "The summons was hand-delivered. It was quite a shock.
"I rang Ben to ask what was going on, but he said he had paid it. I knew he wouldn't do that anyway.
"It would take a good man to put £40 of petrol into a van and then put another £50 in 10-minutes later.
"It just isn't possible, the van only takes £60 of fuel.
"But the police officer told us it isn't the first time it has happened."
A spokesman for Staffordshire Police confirmed the force had contacted Mr Sumbland after being provided with information from the petrol station that he had driven off without paying.
The spokesman added: "The gentleman came into the station with the receipt and now an officer has been tasked to go to the garage and check the CCTV footage."
No-one from Shell was available to comment yesterday.