Police did not probe a second lockdown sighting of Dominic Cummings, the pair who reported him say.
Durham Constabulary told David and Clare Edwards, both 59, there was “no evidence whatsoever” to support their claim after they went to the Independent Office of Police Complaints.
But the couple say the force failed to properly investigate their reported sighting of Mr Cummings in Houghall Woods in Durham just after 11am on April 19.
The Prime Minister’s chief aide denies their version of events yet their account is now backed by three other witnesses.
Durham Police quoted a report that Mr Cummings was seen on Hampstead Heath in London on April 19.
Four sources claim to have seen Cummings in Durham in a joint Mirror/Guardian investigation.
David, who works for a firm that supplied Nightingale hospitals, said: “I’m gobsmacked. If there was ‘insufficient evidence’, is it bec-ause the police were not looking for it?”
Clare, a nurse practitioner, called it “complicity of police with government”.
The couple obtained a Subject Access Request to verify what checks Durham Police made with Mr Cummings.
They focused on the period from May 25, when they gave a statement saying they saw Cummings, to May 28 – the day the force stated publicly there was insufficient evidence to support their claims.
Replying to their complaint, Durham Police said “four experienced detectives obtained statements”, adding: “We can confirm Automatic Number Plate Recognition was checked as part of the investigation.
“There was no evidence whatsoever to support the reported sightings of Dominic Cummings in the Durham Area on April 19.”
The force apologised to them for “not being informed at the outset that your position as witnesses is different from that of a victim”.
David accused Durham Police of “hiding behind a few carefully crafted QC’s statements”, adding: “I don’t think they spoke to Mr Cummings at all.” Clare said: “It is difficult to disprove the evidence of your own eyes.”
A No10 spokesman said: “The PM said he believes Mr Cummings behaved reasonably. He considers the matter closed. Durham Constabulary made clear they are not taking further action against Mr Cummings and that by locating himself at his father’s premises he did not breach the regulations.”
Durham Constabulary said the comp-laint was “dealt with under appropriate procedures and the investigation is now closed”. Police took no action on an April 12 sighting of Mr Cummings.