A time-wasting man from Peterborough who repeatedly abused the 999 system has been jailed for the second time.
Rhys Pilott, 28, repeatedly called 999 to burp at emergency operators, taking up valuable and life-saving lines into Cambridgeshire Constabulary’s control room.
Pilott was sentenced to six months in prison in November 2019 for similar offences.
But he was released from prison early for ‘good behaviour’.
After being released early from prison, Pilott appeared to waste no time in dialling 999 in order to belch at call handlers.
Pilott made a total of 80 time-wasting calls and was arrested five times.
On one occasion, the force received 24 999 calls from Pilott within the space of 45 minutes.
This caused the emergency line to become blocked, leaving call handlers unable to answer genuine emergency calls.
Pilott, of Crown Mews, Peterborough, was arrested again in October this year.
Once again, he was charged with causing a public nuisance.
He admitted the charge last week (23 November) and was handed the maximum jail term for hoax calling at Peterborough Magistrates’ Court.
Superintendent Mike Branston said:
“Hoax calls exhaust our resources, cost the public money and, more worryingly, put lives at risk.
“Individuals who feel the need to abuse the 999 service in this way should consider how they would feel if a loved one needed emergency help but couldn’t get through.”
In the past month, Cambridgeshire Constabulary alone has recorded 90 hoaxes/misuse of 999 calls alongside all of the regular daily calls for service and extra Covid-19 calls.
A spokesperson for the force said: “Each of the hoax calls that required a response would have wasted a large number of resources”.
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