Police tried to ban former parking association boss from sitting opposite women he didn't know on public transport, court hears

Former chief executive of British Parking Association Patrick Troy
Former chief executive of British Parking Association Patrick Troy Credit: Central News 

Police attempted to ban the former boss of the British Parking Association from sitting opposite women he didn't know on public transport, a court heard after he was caught filming up a commuter's skirt. 

Patrick Troy, 56, was caught desperately fiddling with his phone in a bid to delete the recording after a witness confronted him about it at Vauxhall station on June 8 last year. 

He pleaded guilty to committing an act outraging public decency at Westminster Magistrates Court and was sentenced to 18 weeks imprisonment, suspended for two years, on Monday. 

The court heard Troy, who resigned from his position at the association in February for "personal reasons", was also made subject to an indefinite Sexual Harm Prevention Order (SHPO), which prohibits him from taking pictures on public transport. 

He said every time he did it, film up skirts, he hated it and saw his arrest as a watershed momentMalachy Pakenham, prosecuting

British Transport Police had applied for the order to include a ban on sitting opposite unknown females, but this condition was dropped. 

Malachy Pakenham, prosecuting, told the court that Troy - who described being caught as a "watershed" moment - had been caught filming the woman as she walked towards platform eight of the busy London station 

"The defendant was seen holding his phone at an angle below her skirt and the witness saw the red recording light on and a clear image of the skirt and back of the woman's legs," he said. 

Credit: Tony Palmer 

"The witness challenged him at platform eight and followed him onto the train where he was seen with his hand in his right pocket fidgeting with something. It is thought he was trying to get his phone out to delete the image.

"The police were called and when the train stopped at Clapham Junction he was arrested. A number of other images were found on the phone. He was interviewed on two occasions and was quite frank and apologetic for his actions, saying he regretted his actions, which disgusted him.

"He said every time he did it, film up skirts, he hated it and saw his arrest as a watershed moment. He said it was not a hobby, but when the opportunity presented itself he was tempted as he travelled to and from work. and there were other images."

Troy tried to explain himself to police: "Sometimes I wonder, I suppose it's for sexual gratification, I don't know, that must be the conclusion."

Troy's lawyer Michael Sprack, referring to the probation report, told the court he had no previous convictions. 

"He made frank admissions in interview and was concerned that the police had as much information as they could," he added. 

Magistrate John Newgas said the offence had gone on for a period of 10 months, with a range of victims affected. 

The sentence was reduced from 24 weeks to 18 weeks due to the guilty plea. Troy must also comply with a thirty-five day designated activity requirement and up to 100 days on a programme chosen by the probation service.

"This offence is so serious custody is the only option, due to harm and risk," added Mr Newgas. "A suspended sentence is serious. If you commit an offence within twenty-four months the sentence could be reactivated. You are on a warning and quite lucky to not be in prison."

He must also pay £85 costs and a £115 victim surcharge.

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