The male PCs, who were dressed in their traditional uniforms, entered the shallow end of the pool and swam about 10m towards the man who was aged in his 50s.

With then help of a children's noodle float, they pulled him towards the side where at least four uniformed colleagues were waiting for him.

He was then placed in handcuffs and led out of the pool area.

Despite the dramatic police response, the man in question was found to have committed no offence and was driven home by officers.

The incident happened after the swimmer began shouting and swearing at children who had been splashing him.

He was asked to leave the pool in Bournemouth, Dorset, by lifeguards but refused and so the police were called to get him out.

A shocked member of the public who was in the spectator area took a video recording of the incident.

Sharese Taylor, 19, a sales assistant, said the man had reacted angrily towards the children but claimed the police handling of the situation was 'ridiculous'.

She said: "Suddenly eight police officers arrived in the pool area and two jumped in fully clothed, from different sides.

"They used a long, red noodle float to pull him over to the side. It took about four policemen to hold him down and they used some kind of straps to tie his feet together.

"They then handcuffed him.

"It was ridiculous that so many police turned up and that two of them went into the water. It seemed a bit over the top."

Dorset police refused to state how many officers attended the incident at the Littledown leisure centre in Bournemouth.

But Chief Inspector Chris Weekes said the officers had dealt with a potential breach of the peace in a 'high risk environment.'

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