Man threatened by violent customer told he ‘was not a priority’ by police

INCIDENT: Sales executives Amar Ahmed and Matt Nixon from Rock Bank Motors
INCIDENT: Sales executives Amar Ahmed and Matt Nixon from Rock Bank Motors
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A garage worker hid from a violent customer after police allegedly refused to send an officer to investigate.

Matt Nixon dialled 999 after a customer began making threats and then lashed out at cars.

I couldn’t believe it when the police said it wasn’t urgent – if somebody swings a hammer at you, it’s urgent all right.

Matt Nixon

He marched off, saying he was going to come back with a hammer.

Matt called the police – but was told his call “was not a priority”.

Matt says that when he disputed the operator’s assessment of the situation, the police operator hung up on him.

The sales executive locked himself inside the unit at Rock Bank Motors, Southgate, Fulwood, Preston, as the customer sat outside in his car.

Several hours later, there was still no sign of police.

The drama began at around 10am on Friday when a customer appeared at the garage complaining about a car he had been sold.

He lashed out at vehicles and said he was “going to come back with a hammer.”

Matt said he was genuinely fearful and called the police.

He said: “I understand why he was irate – but I’m not here to take that kind of abuse. He started punching cars.

“I couldn’t believe it when the police said it wasn’t urgent – if somebody swings a hammer at you, it’s urgent all right.”

A Lancashire police spokesman said: “We were called shortly before 10am following reports of a civil dispute which had occurred earlier on in the morning.

“Patrols were due to attend the garage but had to be diverted due to a high risk missing from home inquiry.

“Mr Nixon was given safeguarding advice over the phone and was advised to ring 999 in the event of any further incidents.

“Attempts have also been made to contact the other party.”

It comes as Chief Constable Steve Finnigan revealed this week further cuts facing the force will mean it is the hardest hit in the country.