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Man who assaulted two officers published incident on Facebook


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Chief constable sends impact statement to court on "growing trend" of assaults.


Date - 19th December 2019
By - Police Oracle 

A man who filmed himself assaulting two Avon and Somerset officers and later posted the footage on Facebook has been given a sentence of more than three years after pleading guilty to wounding with intent, assaulting an emergency worker and criminal damage relating to breaking  one of the officers’ glasses.

Martin Williams, 28, kicked one officer in the face before running up to his colleague and punching him in the face, causing serious facial injuries.

Bristol Crown Court heard the officers had stopped Williams' car in the Knowle area of the city, finding he had a three-year-old who was not in a child car seat sat in the back.

Prosecuting, James Haskell told the court Williams was "immediately angry and abusive" towards PC Matthew Williams, who was on duty with colleague PC Andrew Gilbert.

PC Gilbert attempted to handcuff Williams' cousin Scott Collins, who had been in the front passenger seat. Mr Collins left the car and PC Gilbert twice deployed his Taser and arrested him.

As this was happening, Williams kicked PC Williams "hard in the face" and ran from the driver's side of the car.

He then ran towards PC Gilbert, who was holding handcuffs in one hand and a Taser in the other, and punched him in the face.

The officer was taken to hospital, where he received 14 stitches for a deep laceration to his upper lip.

Williams was arrested the following day and later posted footage from his mobile phone on to Facebook.

One comment posted underneath the footage - not by the defendant - referred to people following PC Williams home to see if his family "likes being terrorised".

In a victim impact statement, PC Gilbert said his speech had been affected and he had only been able to eat liquid food after the incident due to the swelling.

"I had my hands full and Martin Williams hit me with a cheap shot when I was unable to defend myself," Pc Gilbert said.

PC Williams described the guilt he felt at his colleague being assaulted while they were on duty together.

Andy Marsh, the chief constable of Avon and Somerset Police, also submitted a statement to the court to highlight the impact of the "growing trend" of members of the public assaulting officers and staff.

From January to October this year, the force recorded a total of 1,090 assaults on officers, detention officers and police community support officers - an average of 109 per month.

"It is no longer a rare and exceptional occurrence, rather an everyday occurrence," he said.

Representing Williams, Sam Jones said his client committed the offences out of concern for his cousin, who had recently suffered a stroke.

He said Williams had been affected by the recent deaths of his sister and father and suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder.

Judge William Hart sentenced Williams to three years and 19 weeks in prison.

The judge referred to the chief constable's statement to the court, which he said raised "proper and laudable concerns for the welfare and safety of his officers".

As he was taken to the cells, Williams swore and made an obscene gesture at police sitting in the public gallery.

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