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NEWS


OFFICER ‘LET DOWN BY COURT’ AS ATTACKER


AVOIDS JAIL TIME An ofcer’s faith in the courts has been shattered after a man who fractured his nose and cheekbone walked free with a suspended sentence


PC David Young was repeatedly punched in the face by Joel Rushton who admitted assault occasioning actual bodily harm and making threatening phone calls to his ex-partner at York Crown Court in September. He was spared jail thanks to ‘glowing’ character references.


The officer, who missed 12 weeks’ work while recovering from painful surgery, said: “Even if he got some time in prison, it would have given him time to reflect – that would have felt like the right outcome. Now there is this outcome, which is absolutely disgusting in my mind. “It makes you question if you want


to do this job anymore. Is it okay for me to be used as a punchbag? It just sends the message that anyone can assault a police officer and get away with it.” Rushton was also ordered to pay £1,500 compensation on top of his nine- month, nightly curfew and to carry out 150 hours’ unpaid work. But PC Young would rather not have the money and see his attacker behind bars instead. “To me, the compensation is a kick in


the teeth,” he added. “And will I see that money anyway? As a victim everything is becoming an extra hassle for me while


the offender is just getting on with his life now. I hope there can be change in the future because I would hate this to happen to any of my colleagues.” The Federation has campaigned successfully for the maximum sentence for those who assault emergency workers to be doubled from one to two years. The Home Office has agreed to make the change in upcoming legislation Rob Bowles, Chair of North Yorkshire


Police Federation, said: “We, of course, welcome the increased sentences, but


PC David Young


“I hope there can be change in the future because I would hate this to happen to any of my colleagues.”


the reality is that nothing will change unless magistrates and judges use their full sentencing powers. Any attack on an officer is completely unacceptable and is not ‘part of the job’ but sadly, and evidently, the criminal justice system is still failing to see this and fails to treat our officers as victims. “My colleagues time and time again


are being let down and are left picking up the broken pieces while their attacker is laughing and getting on with their life. It is disgraceful.”


Nick O’Time By Colin Whittock


DECEMBER 2020 | POLICE | 11


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