TWO police officers were asked to strip after being mistaken for kiss-o-grams in a comedy sketch-style mix-up.

The confusion came about after a woman whose son was celebrating his 18th birthday contacted two kiss-o-gram firms to make inquiries.

She booked a girl from Sunderland company Babes to attend a party at her home in Peterlee, County Durham, last Friday, and Pauline Simms, 24, duly turned up dressed as a policewoman.

But a kiss-o-gram from the other company, driven by its male owner, also turned up, apparently thinking that she too had been booked. A dispute ensued which resulted in the police being called.

A Durham Constabulary spokesman said: "It seems that a man who was representing the other company that arrived was involved in a dispute with the original strip-o-gram and during the course of that dispute, some keys and a mobile phone disappeared.

"When the police officers arrived and intervened, they were returned."

The spokesman said that in the confusion, party-goers thought the officers were part of the entertainment.

He said: "When they arrived, there was a belief that the genuine police officers were part of the package, and they were asked if they were going to take their clothes off."

They declined and convinced party-goers they were genuine officers.

The incident was classed as a civil dispute, and no charges were brought. Ms Simms declined to comment.