CS spray used on 'vulnerable man' who threatened police

A “VULNERABLE” man who hurled foul-mouthed abuse at police officers and threatened them with a table leg has escaped a jail term.

Police had to use CS spray against Joe Light (25), of Kingswood Avenue, Laughton, before they could arrest him.

He was sentenced for threatening behaviour, criminal damage and breaching a suspended sentence order at Sheffield Crown Court last Thursday (8).

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Light’s mother called the police just before 5pm on October 16 and told them there were people in her home trying to take away her TV, Mr Robert Sandford, prosecuting, told the court.

She was not at home, but Light, who was at her home, had reported the theft to her.

A police officer arrived but he found all the doors and windows were closed, Mr Sandford said.

“Officers tried to make contact with the defendant and he made contact with the officers, telling them to ‘F*** off’ and shouting ‘F*** off you piggy b*******’,” he added.

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“They said the defendant came to the ground floor window and punched it with his fist, causing damage to the inner and outer panes and causing injury to his hand.

“He opened the front door while holding a wooden table leg in a threatening manner and told the officers to ‘F*** off’.

“His manner was so aggresive that PC Molyneux fully expected the defendant to assault him and his colleagues.”

The officers drew their batons because he was being so aggresive, Mr Sandford told the court.

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“The defendant retreated into the house with the table leg and was again very abusive to the constables,” he said.

Officers had to use spray to gain control over Light before they could arrest him, Mr Sandford told the court.

Light made no comment to the police when he was interviewed, other than to claim that the injury on his forehead was caused by the police.

He pleaded guilty to the offences at an earlier hearing at Sheffield Magistrates’ Court.

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At the time of the offence, he was serving a six-month jail term, suspended for two years, which was imposed in March for criminal damage, threatening behaviour and possession of an offensive weapon. 

Ms Zaiban Alam, mitigating, said Light had been arrested for an offence in 2016 which he was later cleared of — but that arrest had made him a target in his neighbourhood.

His mother described her son as vulnerable and said there were young men who sought to take advantage of him, Ms Alam told the court.

“She speaks about how they have made their lives a misery,” Ms Alam said.

“This is not a case of a young man looking for trouble.

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“Your Honour knows he has difficulties and suffers from learning difficulties and now depression.

“He would clearly suffer and struggle in custody which would put him in the company of those who would seek to exploit his vulnerabilities.”

Sentencing, Judge Michael Slater told Light that sending him to prison would be counter-productive.

“I have no choice but to make the suspended sentence order tougher,” he said.

Light was given a 12-month conditional discharge and was ordered to complete a drugs rehabilitation order to help him with his cannabis addiction.

“This is your very last chance,” Judge Slater said.

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