Defeated Doncaster mayoral candidate calls for election re-run over police 'set-up'
A defeated Doncaster mayoral candidate has called for the election to be held again, over what he describes as a 'police set-up' after a video of him receiving a parking ticket went viral.
Independent candidate Eddie Todd, who finished in fourth place in Thursday's election, says he is requesting a new election over the conduct of South Yorkshire Police, after a Facebook clip of him being spoken to by officers in Doncaster Market Place was viewed more than 20,000 times ahead of polling day.
Speaking on the Doncaster Talk Facebook group, Mr Todd said: "A South Yorkshire Police officer made a public statement that I had committed a criminal offence. This was seen by around 300,000 people.
"This social media video completely destroyed my 32 day campaign.
"On these grounds I am requesting a new vote for councillors and Mayor to take place with the general election."
Mr Todd has previously said he believed the conduct of officers during the incident amounted to a 'police set-up'.
He said: He said: "I was set up by the police. Someone took a video - the police officer lied. "He said I'd gone through a red light and the post's been shared on (social) media. I think 400 shares of it and 20,000 people have viewed it or more than that now. So a lie has maybe jeopardised the whole campaign."
Local businessman Todd, who had said he would build a Doncaster 'Disneyland' as one of his campaign pledges, polled 5,344 votes, putting him behind winner Ros Jones (Labour), Conservative George Jabbour and UKIP candidate Brian Whitmore.
The video, filmed by passer by Owen Clarke in the town centre on Wednesday shows Mr Todd being handed a ticket by the police for using the blue lights of his 'ambulance' to park.
Mr Clarke approached the police in the video to question why Mr Todd was being given a ticket.
The police officer explained that Mr Todd's 'ambulance' is a private vehicle and he was not trained to use its blue lights. Mr Todd confirmed the ticket has been given because he was parked with up with his blue lights flashing while he was campaigning.
He said: "I left the ambulance in Market Place and I must have been less than 100 yards away speaking to someone while I was campaigning. "A police car pulled up to the ambulance and I asked him if there was a problem and he said it was a private car and that it cannot have blue lights flashing while parked.
"I told him that it is a company car and is used for the track to transport injured people to hospital. The track was open that day and I could have been called at anytime to go back. I accepted the fixed penalty fine.
Mr Todd has described his election campaign as a 'fantastic time' but added: 'I now think I had a lucky escape'.
He has offered his services to re-elected mayor Ros Jones as a consultant and says he can build a snack bar and Post Office in the market for free, could also build a power plant to heat all of Doncaster for free and would also remove all of Doncaster's beggars through donations.
South Yorkshire Police have been contacted for comment on the incident.