A Maidstone woman has been sentenced to 12 months in prison just a day after kicking and spitting at police.
Karen Thompson was arrested after subjecting officers to a torrent of verbal and physical abuse at her home in Lower Fant Road, during the early hours of Friday 25 October 2019.
Police had attended the address after reports of a disturbance. On arrival Thompson refused to allow entry and hurled abuse as well a mobile phone from a window. Officers forced their way inside before Thompson then tried to spit in one of their faces and bite the hand of another. The 56-year-old made further attempts to spit at and kick officers and the abuse also continued in custody, where she scratched an officer and deliberately urinated on the floor of a cell.
Thompson was charged with two counts of common assault of an emergency worker, under the Assaults on Emergency Workers Act. The Act came into force in November last year and created a new offence of assault against emergency workers – including police, paramedics, nurses and other blue light workers. It also provides tougher sentencing powers for judges.
On the following day, Saturday 26 October, Thompson appeared before Medway Magistrates’ Court. She was sentenced to 12 months imprisonment, which also comprised the activation of a suspended sentence, imposed in August 2019 for similar offences.
Detective Sergeant Vick Swift of the Maidstone Vulnerable Investigation Team said: ’Every day police are required to attend unpredictable, challenging and sometimes volatile situations. However, like any other job, officers should not be subjected to assaults whilst they are carrying out their duties. Thompson’s behaviour was utterly abhorrent and unacceptable and it is pleasing to see the courts deliver the appropriate justice in such a swift manner. Any assaults on police are completely unacceptable and those who we suspect are responsible for abusing officers can expect to be charged with an offence that, as demonstrated in this instance, can carry serious penalties.’