Yvette’s I don’t believe it’ moment

PUBLISHED: 12:07 22 February 2008 | UPDATED: 10:25 17 June 2010

Yvette Salter was left picking up pieces of glass after police broke in to her home.

Yvette Salter was left picking up pieces of glass after police broke in to her home.

A woman was left astounded after a garage left her repaired car on double yellow lines, landing her with a parking ticket. And Yvette Salter s annoyance grew when she discovered police smashed a hand-made stained glass window to get into her house.

A woman was left astounded after a garage left her repaired car on double yellow lines, landing her with a parking ticket.

And Yvette Salter's annoyance grew when she discovered police smashed a hand-made stained glass window to get into her house.

Officers had no idea she was on a holiday cruise when they broke in, after becoming concerned for her whereabouts because the car remained parked illegally.

The police have agreed to pay for the damage they caused to gain entry to her home in High Street Newton Poppleford.

The comedy of errors began when a fault in her new Ford Ka's suspension was repaired by an Exeter garage while she was on her first trip to India and Sri Lanka in 30 years.

Instead of returning it to her drive last Friday, the day before she returned, it was delivered last Tuesday and parked illegally.

A complaint led police to issue a parking ticket, then later to break into her home when the car was not moved and a neighbour could not tell them where Mrs Salter was.

"I didn't tell my neighbour I was going away, but I told someone two doors up," explained Mrs Salter, who returned late on Saturday to find the damage.

When her bus home was delayed, the home care assistant contacted her son Simon in Exeter who relayed the bad news.

French-born Mrs Salter, who has lived in the village 14 years, said: "The police got the neighbour next door and borrowed ladders but couldn't see into every room.

"My neighbour didn't want to go in, in case I was lying dead, so they broke the glass. It was a stained glass window I made myself over six months at evening class of a flamingo with its feet in water, a palm and sunset.

"They found the car keys and rang the garage who said they would pay the parking fine.

"I feel the garage is at fault for not giving proper instructions to the person who brought my car over."

Now Mrs Salter, who has been busy sweeping up broken glass, will have her panel re-made from the original pattern.

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