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Home / Chandigarh / Punjab-origin man jailed for lying about having Covid-19, spitting at police in UK

Punjab-origin man jailed for lying about having Covid-19, spitting at police in UK

Karan Singh, 23, pleaded guilty at the Croydon Crown court to three counts of assault on an emergency worker, use of threatening, abusive, insulting words, behaviour to cause harassment, alarm, distress and possession of a class B drug

chandigarh Updated: Apr 29, 2020 00:31 IST
Prasun Sonwalkar
Prasun Sonwalkar
Hindustan Times, London
An Indian-origin London-based man has been jailed for eight months after he spat at police custody staff after lying about having Covid-19 because he was “angry”.
An Indian-origin London-based man has been jailed for eight months after he spat at police custody staff after lying about having Covid-19 because he was “angry”.

An Indian-origin London-based man has been jailed for eight months after he spat at police custody staff after lying about having Covid-19 because he was “angry”, Scotland Yard said on Tuesday.

Karan Singh, 23, pleaded guilty at the Croydon Crown court to three counts of assault on an emergency worker, use of threatening, abusive, insulting words, behaviour to cause harassment, alarm, distress and possession of a class B drug (cannabis).

He was sentenced immediately to four months’ imprisonment. He was also sentenced to an additional four months’ jail, to run consecutively, for being in breach of a suspended sentence – making his total sentence eight months.

The police said on March 14, officers were on patrol when they spotted Singh sitting in a car in a driveway in Croydon. Officers recognised Singh as being disqualified from driving and so they approached the car and spoke to him.

Singh denied he was disqualified from driving and said he had been given his licence back. As officers were speaking to Singh, they noticed a strong smell of cannabis coming from him and the vehicle. Officers asked him about the smell and he admitted to smoking cannabis.

As one of the officers began explaining the grounds for a search under the Misuse of Drugs Act, Singh attempted to start the engine of the vehicle and make off from police. The vehicle stalled and officers were able to detain him.

A snap bag of cannabis was found and Singh admitted to having cannabis for personal use. Singh was arrested and when he was taken to a south London police station, he was said to have been verbally abusive to the interviewing officers. Following the interview, Singh became aggressive and said he would not go back to his cell. He had to be physically taken back by a custody sergeant and PC, with a DC and designated detention officer (DDO) also stepping in to support their colleagues.

Once at the cell door, Singh continued to struggle with the officers. The officers managed to get him into the cell and when the door was partially closed, Singh spat directly into the custody sergeant’s face. Some of the spit also hit the DDO’s lip and the DC’s cheek.

Singh then tried to prevent officers from closing the cell door, during which he told the custody sergeant that he had coronavirus. He was further arrested on suspicion of assaulting an emergency worker.

Following the incident, he was interviewed behind his cell door for safety reasons. He admitted to spitting at the officers stating he did it because he had been waiting for hours and he “got stressed out”.

Superintendent Dan Knowles said: “It is never acceptable to spit at an emergency worker, whether it is during these unprecedented times or not. Singh carrying out this vile act and then lying about having coronavirus was a deplorable thing to do and it caused a great deal of distress for the officers and staff who were just trying to do their job and keep London safe.”

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