Beds, Herts & Bucks

Halloween corpse display man told to 'tone it down' by police

Halloween display
Image caption Mr Creighton uses his annual display to raise money for cancer

A man whose Halloween display included a disembowelled corpse has been told to "tone it down" after police received a report it was upsetting children.

James Creighton put the fake corpse and other items in his garden on Grove Road, Stevenage to raise money for a cancer charity.

He said he thought police were "joking" when they told him of the concerns.

Hertfordshire Police said he had been asked to change the display as "people were being distressed by it".

A spokesman for the force said the corpse was "very realistic and if people have concerns, we have to address them".

Mr Creighton said he had shown his corpses and skeletons every year since 2009 and had never had a complaint.

He said he was a "huge" Halloween fan and started the "gored-up" shows shortly after his grandmother died of cancer to raise money for Cancer Research UK.

'So realistic'

He said he thought the officers who came to his house on Tuesday "must be joking" when they told him of the concerns.

"I thought it was a ridiculous waste of police time.

"If someone was worried, they could have told me and I would have made some sort of compromise."

Mr Creighton said the officers had asked him to "lose a few bits" and "put a tarpaulin up, but then people wouldn't be able to see it and I do this to raise money".

Image caption Mr Creighton imports many of the items from the United States

He added that he had removed some items following the visit, but had since put them back.

Insp Simon Tabert said officers had visited Mr Creighton "to discuss the matter".

"We had a complaint [from a parent] that it was so realistic, it was going to upset their children," he said.

"Mr Creighton offered to create a barrier, but it's my understanding we did not ask him to do so.

"We asked him to tone it down, because people were being distressed by it."

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