Woman dialled 999 and asked police to order her a takeaway

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A woman plagued Sussex Police with nearly 100 phone calls during a five-month period - at one time calling 999 to ask them to order her a takeaway.

Netta Hall, 45, was convicted last week of making persistent nuisance calls to the police, taking up the valuable time of call handlers and distracting them from dealing with genuine calls for assistance from the public.

Police said that Hall, from Salvington, phoned Sussex Police through both 101 and 999, more than 95 times between 1 January and 15 June 2016, tying up call handlers for a total of around seven hours.

She contacted them on such things as mortgage repayments on her house, historical non-police incidents from the 1980s, statements about how she felt living in the town, asking if 999 operators could order her a takeaway, her car being taken by police for driving offences, and experiences in shops with staff.

Hall was convicted in her absence, having failed to answer a summons, at Worthing Magistrates Court on March 27 of persistently making use of a public electronic communications network for the purpose of causing annoyance, inconvenience or needless anxiety to another, against the Communications Act 2003.

She was given a 12-month Community Order, required to carry out a 10 day behavioural rehabilitation course, was given a six-week overnight curfew, and was also ordered to pay a total of £235 court costs and victim surcharge.

Call-taker Sarah-Louise Gliddon said Hall had been warned about her behaviour after contacting police on a weekly, sometimes daily, basis on non-police matters.