Demanded a lift home - struggled with police

A DRUNKEN man’s struggle with police – which started when he demanded a lift home from police officers – resulted in the key to his handcuffs being broken off and firefighters had to be called to remove them.


The struggle lasted for more than hour in what Judge Gary Perry said had been one of the worst incidents of its type that had come before him in his time as a judge.

Nathan Doyle, 24, of Sunnyside, Le Grand Bouet, St Peter Port, admitted charges of resisting four police officers in the due execution of their duties, behaving in a disorderly manner at the North Plantation, and causing criminal damage to a police cell.

Prosecuting officer Marc Davies told the court how the defendant had approached police officers at the North Plantation in the early hours of one morning when he was clearly intoxicated.

When he said he wanted them to give him a lift home they told him to get a taxi. He said as public servants they had duty to see that he got home. He kept labouring the point and officers warned him to back away and stop swearing. On two occasions they walked away but he followed them.

When they returned to a police car to deal with another matter he put his hand on the top of the vehicle, preventing them from closing the car door. At this point he was arrested and when taken to the floor he continued swearing and kicking out.

He struggled as he was put in a police van and then on the way to the station vomited and spat, kicked and headbutted the van walls.

At the police station he struggled as safety clothing and a spit guard were being applied. He made threats to officers saying he would kill their families and slit their daughters’ throats, and there was a lengthy struggle during which the handcuffs keys were broken.

In the police cell Doyle urinated on the floor, splashed water around and wet the toilet paper.

The only previous matters on his record were cautions issued in Northern Ireland, the last of which was in 2015.

Advocate Phoebe Cobb said her client could remember nothing of the incident and had been shocked to wake up in a police cell and be told what he had done.

He was embarrassed and ashamed at the entirety of his actions and particularly mortified by the language he had used towards officers. He was respected by work colleagues and had been an asset to the community in the 10 months that he had been in Guernsey. He had barely left his accommodation since this incident.

Judge Gary Perry said police and firefighters could do without having to deal with drunken idiots in this way. An emergency call could have been received at the time and police officers would not have been able to leave because of the defendant’s behaviour. This had been a prolonged incident which had wasted a lot of people’s time.

It was unclear whether Doyle would retain his employment, so community service was not a sentencing option.

Prison sentences of four months, and one month consecutive, were imposed for resisting police and behaving in a disorderly manner respectively. Three months concurrent was imposed for the criminal damage taking the total to five months which was suspended for 18 months.

Doyle must pay £180 compensation for the cost of professional cleaners who had to clean the police van and cell, and pay £200 compensation to each of the four officers he resisted, taking the total financial penalty to £980.

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