Lead thief spat at police

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A POLICEMAN described how he was assaulted and almost headbutted by a drunken man with 61 previous convictions against his name.

John Gaskin, of Trent Road, Grantham, admitted assaulting a constable in the execution of his duty and a public order offence following the incident in Westgate, Grantham.

Gaskin was with a female friend and had had too much to drink when the pair became embroiled in an argument with two police officers.

Gaskin then became abusive, shouting and swearing to the point he was arrested for a public order offence.

Jim Clare, prosecuting, described in the officer’s words how Gaskin then “threw himself towards me with his head”.

Mr Clare added: “The officer felt that Mr Gaskin was trying to headbutt him.”

Gaskin was taken to the floor and nearby door staff came to the officers’ aid.

Gaskin was put into the back of a police car but refused to calm down, continuing to shout and swear.

Mr Clare described how at one point Gaskin spat at the officers before striking one of them in the thigh.

Rory McMillan, defending, told the court the incident came about because Gaskin had consumed too much alcohol.

He said: “He is not used to drinking at all.”

Mr McMillan went on to say how another factor in the incident was because of animosity held by Mr Gaskin’s female partner towards one of the police officers.

Mr McMillan said Gaskin does not accept trying to headbutt one of the officers.

He added: “He has no clear memory of what happened in the police car but accepts what the officers said.

“He says he is very sorry for what happened. He has no previous convictions towards the police.

“He says it is totally out of character to have an attitude towards the police.”

Gaskin also admitted stealing lead from a property in Brant Broughton.

Mr McMillan said Gaskin took the lead piping because he thought nobody wanted it.

He added: “He tried to speak to the owner to confirm that but, rather recklessly, decided it must be abandoned and took it and weighed it in.

“He says, if he had been able to speak to the owner he would not have taken it.”

The case was adjourned until July 22 for a pre-sentence report.