A drug addled thug who head butted, kicked and spat at police officers in a hospital has sent to a Young Offenders’ Centre.
A police sergeant suffered a broken hand and required surgery following the attack by Jamie Lee Harvey (20) who had dozens of previous convictions.
Craigavon Crown Court heard an ambulance crew called the police at around 9.30am on St. Patrick’s Day last year over a woman who was “trying to strangle herself with her own hands.”
Even though it was Harvey, from Drumbeg, Craigavon who called the emergency services, he refused at first let them but when he eventually did he became irate, said a prosecutor.
“Both of them were uncooperative with the paramedics,” said the lawyer adding that with Harvey appeared under the influence of drugs and insisted on going to the hospital with her.
At Craigavon Area Hospital, Harvey threatened to punch someone if he didn’t get a cigarette and was verbally abusive to police in the presence of medical staff and members of the public.
It was as he was being arrested for disorderly behaviour that Harvey “struggled wildly,” lashing out at the officers with kicks, punches and head butts as the cops tried to restrain him.
The lawyer said the police sergeant sustained a fracture to the fourth metacarpal of his left hand, an injury which required surgery to insert a metal plate and screws but from which the officers hand “will never be 100%.”
Harvey, who appeared at court on Friday by videolink from Hydebank YOC, was put into the back of a cell van where he repeatedly spat on the walls while shouting he had coronavirus.
He later entered guilty pleas to causing the sergeant actual bodily harm, four counts of assaulting police and single counts of resisting police and causing criminal damage to the cell van.
It was revealed Harvey had 67 previous convictions including 24 for assaulting police and 44 for failing to comply with court orders.
Imposing the 27 month custodial sentence and ordering Harvey to spend nine months of that in the YOC and the rest under licence conditions, Judge Patrick Lynch QC told the defendant “you don’t need me to emphasis the gravity of the offence.“
“You disgraced yourself in hospital in front of people who were attending the A&E and that in itself is grave because people there are in distress or pain and the last thing they need is someone like you creating more distress,” said the judge.
Reading from the injured officer’s statement, the judge outlined how the fracture affected the sergeants career and family life, telling Harvey, “this officer will have to live with the consequences of your actions for the rest of his life”.