Loo roll forces confession from freedom camper

18:13, Jan 11 2012

Toilet paper doesn't lie.

The soft (ideally), multi-ply product proved to be the downfall of one freedom camper who fell foul of a Coromandel bylaw prohibiting the practice.

A Thames Coromandel District Council officer came across a woman who had gone for a toilet stop near her van.

"She denied it was hers," council spokesman Craig Birkett told the Waikato Times.

"But the toilet paper on the ground matched a roll of toilet paper that was hanging out the back of her vehicle.

"The officer said, 'You can't really deny it now can you?' And she said, `Well, I guess not'."

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Mr Birkett said in general people were apologetic when caught freedom camping.

"We haven't had any stories about people being overly aggressive, just a few people slamming the door and telling the officer to go and mind his own business – sometimes with stronger words than that."

The bylaw, introduced on December 19, has had positive results, and had reduced instances of rubbish bins overflowing or refuse being dumped illegally, he said. "For us we haven't had the same impact we've had in previous years with rubbish bins overflowing, stuff like that, particularly in townships."

Mr Birkett said the message to visitors is to look into where freedom camping is and is not allowed.

A freedom camping amnesty is now over and all illegal campers staying overnight in prohibited locations face a $200 fine.

There is a list of the off limits areas at tcdc.govt.nz.

Waikato Times