Police van pictured in Leeds disabled parking spot

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A police officer has found himself in a spot of bother after being caught parking in a disabled bay in Leeds.

The officer’s van was captured on camera in the bay at the Morrisons store in Hunslet.

An eagle-eyed shopper who took the photo passed it to the Yorkshire Evening Post and we in turn raised the matter with West Yorkshire Police.

The force has now said the officer involved will be warned as to his “future conduct”.

Chief Insp Stephen Palmer, from the police’s City and Holbeck division, said: “I would like to thank the member of the public for bringing this matter to our attention.

“On Monday, officers were called to Morrisons’ store at Hunslet after a shoplifter was detained by security staff.

“The police vehicle was parked in a disabled bay to allow the officer quick access to the store and to support staff in dealing with the suspect.

“While there are occasions when police need to contravene traffic laws and regulations in the course of their duties I do not consider that to have been the case here. With that in mind, I will be speaking to the officer concerned regarding his future conduct.”

The Leonard Cheshire Disability charity today called on all drivers to observe parking regulations. Its campaigns co-ordinator for the north of England, James Harding, said: “It is absolutely crucial that disabled people are able to park in designated bays, particularly those who can’t walk long distances.

“If someone without a blue badge is blocking a space then it can make the difference between a disabled person being able to get out and about and having their choices completely removed.”

Parking rules hit the headlines last month after Chancellor George Osborne was photographed getting into a Land Rover in a disabled bay at a service station near Newport. A Treasury source said Mr Osborne was not driving the vehicle and did not realise it had been left in an unauthorised spot.

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