CUPCAKES were just one of the gifts police officers declined over fears of committing a criminal offence.
Details obtained by The News show the vast array of gifts offered to police by grateful members of the public.
Hampshire Constabulary’s gift and gratuities log shows an officer in Waterlooville declined to accept cupcakes.
The entry said: ‘Officer was given gift from member of the public. Officer brought them back to the station to save any offence.’
An officer at Portsmouth declined a buffet meal offered after attending a commissioning event in April 2014.
Another officer in Portsmouth was invited into a free draw and was selected as a prize-winner of goodie bag, but the gift was declined to be re-drawn or donated to charity. Other gifts rejected between March 2014 and April this year included £20 vouchers, a necklace and a lunch.
A Hampshire police spokeswoman said in a statement: ‘As a general rule, all gifts should be politely refused, so as long as this does not cause offence or embarrassment to the donor.
‘If accepted they should be of low value – less than £10.
‘They should also be as a thank you to the recipient for a specific example of exceptional work.
‘Gifts should be declined especially when there is a live court case ongoing or if the donor is in any way vulnerable – homeless, or with mental health issues.’
She added that the professional standards department advised the officer with the cupcakes that they could have been accepted. Items that were accepted included:
n Jar of homemade jam donated to a Fareham officer.
n A thank you card and two boxes of chocolates given to Waterlooville station.
n A drinks reception and three-course dinner given at the Ministerial Journal Awards in London.
n A torch and car hammer set given to an officer in Waterlooville who attended old persons’ accommodation.
In total 38 items were accepted and seven declined.