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DO YOU WANT A BOOBY DANCE? Court told of cop's banter with barman.

Byline: Craig McDonald

An off-duty cop stripped off his T-shirt in a pub and asked a barman if he'd like to see "the booby dance".

David Smith admitted "engaging in banter" with the man after he and two police colleagues had gone out after their shift.

Barman Gerry McAuley claimed Smith returned - minus his T-shirt - after closing time and challenged him to a fight.

But last week, Smith, 26, was cleared of threatening behaviour after a court heard he'd only asked the barman: "Do you want a ticket to the gun show" - a reference to bulging biceps - "or do you want the booby dance?" McAuley, 31, was working at the Behind the Wall pub in Falkirk when Smith, a plainclothes officer based in the town, and two colleagues arrived at 6.30pm.

He said the bar was quiet but the officers became "rather boisterous" as the evening wore on.

At the end of the night, the men left but Smith returned moments later. CCTV footage showed him bare-chested in the pub doorway.

McAuley said: "He said, 'I will fight you here or at any given location.' I took it as a threat." He said the men had been "aggressive, abusive, and intimidating".

But Smith's lawyer Callum Anderson told Falkirk Sheriff Court the barman had engaged in "conversation and banter" with the three throughout the evening.

The lawyer claimed: "What he actually said to you was, 'Do you want a ticket to the gun show or do you want the booby dance?' "He said it in a comedy German accent. It was an extension of the banter which had been taking place earlier in the evening."

Smith told the court: "It was a running joke friends and I had been making since a stag do in Hamburg. The barman was laughing."

Sheriff John Mundy cleared Smith, of Airdrie, but told him: "It is important that the police behave accordingly both on and off duty. Your behaviour fell short."

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Publication:Sunday Mail (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Mar 23, 2014
Words:333
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