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Brand new BMW police car towed away after prang with Range Rover outside Cherry Tree Pub in Tonbridge Road, Barming, Maidstone

By Kent Messenger reporter

A brand new '14-plate police car was towed away following a crash outside The Cherry Tree Pub in Barming, Maidstone.

The top-of-the-range BMW suffered extensive damage to the radiator grill and bonnet after colliding with a Range Rover at the Tonbridge Road/Queen's Road traffic lights around 7pm Saturday.

The black Range Rover suffered relatively minor near-side damage in comparison to the police car which had been responding to reports of a stolen 4x4 in Medway Street, Maidstone.

The crumpled police car along the A26 in Barming

The suspected car thief made off from the scene and officers located the vehicle in Tonbridge Road where it was forced to stop.

The brand new police car damaged following a collision

No injuries were reported.

Simon Eltringham, 34, of no fixed abode, has been charged with drink driving and dangerous driving offences and being in possession of an offensive weapon and robbery.

He was due to appear before Maidstone Magistrates on Bank Holiday Monday.

Both cars were moved off the main A26 before a recovery truck arrived to remove the crumpled police car.

Tonbridge-bound traffic backs up at the Queen's Road/Tonbridge Road junction on the A26

Police were unable to confirm if the car was a write-off or how much it was worth. It would also not state whether the Independent Police Complaints Commission would be asked to investigate. The IPCC can be requested to scrutinise incidents involving police collisions.

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