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Indian-origin man in UK spits in cop’s face, lies about being Covid-19 +ve

Karan Singh, 23, pleaded guilty at the Croydon Crown Court to three counts of assault on an emergency worker, using threatening words to cause harassment and in possession of a class B drug (cannabis).

indians-abroad Updated: Apr 28, 2020 17:11 IST
Prasun Sonwalkar
Prasun Sonwalkar
Hindustan Times, London
Indian-origin man Karan Singh, 23, who spat in cop’s face. (Photo Credit: Scotland Yard)
Indian-origin man Karan Singh, 23, who spat in cop’s face. (Photo Credit: Scotland Yard)

An Indian-origin London-based man has been jailed for eight months after he spat at a police officer 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, using threatening words to cause harassment and in possession of a class B drug (cannabis).

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

The police said that 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 stated that 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 smoking cannabis.

As one of the officers began explaining the grounds for a search under the Misuse of Drugs Act, Singh attempted to run away. 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 stated that 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, Singh 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’.

When asked if he had coronavirus, he admitted that he did not and stated he said it because he was angry. At the conclusion of the interview, Singh was asked if he had anything he wanted to say and he said: “Sorry to the officers.”

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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