UPDATED: Wanted man who taunted police with 'Where's Wally' jibe hands himself in, dressed as Where's Wally
A WANTED man who spent the weekend teasing police about his whereabouts has finally handed himself in – dressed in a Where’s Wally outfit.
JJ McMenamin went to Harrogate police station this morning wearing the costume, and live streamed his arrival on Facebook, declaring himself hide and seek champion of 2016-2017.
A spokeswoman for North Yorkshire Police said: “A 30 year old man from Middleham has been arrested after he handed himself in to officers at Harrogate Police Station.
“The arrest comes after extensive police searches for the man over the weekend, after he failed to turn up for a court hearing for driving offences.”
On the journey from his hiding place to the station he sang along to songs including Johnny Cash’s Fulsom Prison Blues and Lionel Ritchie’s Hello, which includes the lyrics “Is it me you’re looking for?”
Jockey JJ McMenamin, 30, told his Facebook friends he was close enough to watch the search take place in Leyburn, North Yorkshire on Saturday afternoon.
Around a dozen police officers, a police helicopter and search dogs were called to find McMenamin – who according to friends is allegedly wanted for driving offences.
On the Where’s Wally image, Wally’s face was replaced with a picture of his own head and the image was accompanied with the words “Dude… I’m right here.”
In one post he said: “Buddy if they really new how close they are too me not a scooby do were I am. Even got sniffer dogs out and I’m still sat giggling.”
In another post, he said he had watched one officer “pull out a wedgie” after struggling over garden fences.
“I nearly felt sorry for him and was gunna go back give him a hand over but had had a taser,” he added.
JJ McMenamin’s changed his Facebook profile to a Where’s Wally image.
One friend asked McMenamin – a jockey – if he had used horse power to escape the law, but he responded by posting a picture of his feet, saying he only needed those to evade police.
Another asked if he wanted a pint but the fugitive said he was drinking Yorkshire Tea as he wanted to remain “on the ball” ready for “round two”.
McMenamin later posted a photo which appeared to show him relaxing in a hot tub and another holding a cocktail.
In another message he claimed he had escaped to Leeds.
Police spent several hours searching Leyburn town centre and a nearby auction mart and housing estate for the wanted man.
A police helicopter hovered over the town for about an hour.
JJ McMenamin is originally from South Bank, Middlesbrough, and went to work as a jockey in Middleham, North Yorks, around two years ago, friends say.
He is registered as a professional jockey but has no competitive races listed on his Racing Post profile.
Friends say he has had a fall-out with his family and rarely returns home. His sister and mother declined to comment.
A friend in South Bank said: “This Where’s Wally stunt is typical of JJ, he’s entertaining a lot of people on Facebook with this but he’s in trouble this time.
“He is only wanted for driving offences – he was caught at the wheel when he had been banned and the police have started this search for him. You’d think he was a mass murderer the amount of people they have involved.
“Everybody is talking about the Where’s Wally picture.”