A man from Worthing has been jailed for spitting at a police officer and claiming to be infected with Covid-19.
Simon Rogers-Davis, 29, of Brighton Road, Worthing appeared at Brighton Magistrates’ Court on Friday, (1 May) and pleaded guilty to assaulting an emergency worker, affray and racially aggravated harassment.
Police were called to The Wolsey Hotel, in Brighton Road, Worthing at 12.45pm on Wednesday, 29 April, following a report that a resident was damaging property and throwing food around.
Officers attended and arrested the defendant. Rogers-Davis told police he was suffering from Covid-19 symptoms and subsequently said to an officer that it has "all happened because you're Chinese" before pretending to sneeze, spitting at the officer and making further racially abusive comments.
Rogers-Davis was sentenced to 26 weeks imprisonment for assaulting an emergency service worker, four weeks imprisonment for affray and eight weeks for racially aggravated harassment to be served concurrently. He was also ordered to pay a victim surcharge of £128.
The victim, who does not wish to be named, said: "When I turn up to work I do not expect to be assaulted or racially abused while carrying out my duties as a police officer.
"I definitely do not expect to be spat at during the current climate of Covid-19. This was an anxiety provoking experience and was totally unnecessary. This potentially could not just have had an effect on me, but also put my colleagues and family at risk."
Sergeant Peter Allan of Adur and Worthing Prevention said: "I am pleased the court took these offences seriously, because of the flagrant disregard to one of our officers and the vile and personal racist abuse.
"I hope this result sends a strong message to those who seek to exploit public fear, to make personal attacks on those members of the emergency services who are working are hard to protect the community, of which they are members too."
A prolific Worthing shoplifter has been handed a prison sentence by the courts.
Kirsten Hocking, 28, The Steyne in Worthing, appeared at Brighton Magistrates’ Court on Thursday (30 April) to face a total of 10 charges for shoplifting and breaching a Community Protection Notice (CPN).
Hocking committed these offences from January this year and during this time she stole a large quantity of items from different businesses in Worthing, including £996 worth of beauty products.
A CPN with a number of restrictions was issued to Hocking by police in December, preventing her from entering certain geographical areas in Worthing.
Hocking pleaded guilty to eight charges, two breaches of a CPN were dismissed by the court, and she was given a 26-week custodial sentence.
PC Isobel Wimbleton of the Adur, Worthing and Horsham Prevention team said: “After months of hard work from myself and the team to try and tackle Hocking’s persistent shoplifting and anti-social behaviour, I am really pleased with the court result.
“We recognise the impact anti-social behaviour can have on the community and local businesses and this is completely unacceptable.
“We are determined to work with our partners and will continue to use anti-social behaviour legislation to tackle unreasonable behaviour in our communities.”
Alerts/Press Releases sent out this week click the link to see full details.
Burglary Other than Dwelling
Reference: 1598 07/05/2020
Location: Terringes Avenue, Worthing
Date and time: Between 8:30pm and 9:30pm, 7th may
Details: Power tools were stolen from a shed.
Reference: 0961 08/05/2020
Location: Grove Road, Worthing
Date and time: Between the 7th and 8th May
Details: A bicycle was stolen from a garage.
Reference: 0392 11/05/2020
Location: Freshbrook Road, Lancing
Date and time: On the 10th may between 9am and 6pm.
Details: Sporting equipment was stolen from an insecure porch.
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