A TRURO lorry driver who crashed his car on the way back from a night out in Plymouth and told police it had been stolen was caught because he had left the nightclub stamp on his hand when he spoke them.
At Truro Crown Court on Friday, Spencer Rowe, 38, of Benson Road, admitted wasting police time.
Rowe reported his silver Vauxhall Vectra as stolen on the morning of June 1 and proceeded to put in an insurance claim.
He said the vehicle had been stolen while he was staying at a friend's house in Stithians for the evening.
Police officers attended his address but could not find any signs of forced entry and noticed that Rowe had a stamp from Jesters nightclub in Plymouth on his hand.
Officers were able to trace Rowe's movements and found that he had arrived at the Union Street nightclub at 1.30am – while he was supposed to be at his friend's house.
Elaine Hobson, for the prosecution, said: "The defendant's vehicle was located in Kenwyn in Truro and appeared to have been deliberately smashed head-on into a tree."
She said Rowe had made a confession to a friend via text message, saying he had an argument with his former partner and fell asleep in his car.
Terry Eastwood, for the defence, said Rowe had been having difficulties with his wife at the time of the offence.
Judge Christopher Harvey Clark, QC, said: "He had an accident on his way back from Plymouth.
"He claimed his vehicle had been stolen to cover up the circumstances of the accident … it was a complete fabrication.
"What you did caused the police to have to make fairly extensive inquiries as to what you had been doing."
Rowe was sentenced to two months in prison, suspended for 12 months, ordered to carry out 100 hours' unpaid work and pay £500 towards prosecution costs.