Sunderland man coughed and spat at police officers in separate attacks two days apart

A Sunderland man who coughed and spat at police officers in attacks a day apart could be jailed.

Friday, 4th June 2021, 1:25 pm
The first attack happened at Sunderland Royal Hospital.

Leslie Marrs, 42, Prestbury Road, Pennywell, pleaded guilty to the assaults during a hearing at South Tyneside Magistrates’ Court.

The court was told that he coughed at a police officer at Sunderland Royal Hospital on Thursday, January 14, and spat at another officer at a city police station the next day.

Marrs admitted charges of common assault of an emergency worker in relation to the spit and assault by beating of an emergency worker for the cough.

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The case was adjourned for sentence at South Tyneside Law Courts.

Magistrates asked for an all options report, which includes the threat of imprisonment – and adjourned the case.

Tom Morgan, defending, told the court that Marrs ‘has particularly complex issues’ and asked for a a community order or a community penalty to be considered.

Mr Morgan said: “This is assaults on police officers that include the allegation of a cough and of spitting, which are admitted.

“This is a defendant who has particularly complex issues and on the face of it has had an atrocious time over the past 12 months.

“He’s had hospital visits and has had extended stays in hospital and critical stays.

“He is somebody with a record but he’s also somebody who is engaging with local services.

“I would suggest that he’s a good candidate for a community order or a community penalty.”

The case was adjourned by the magistrates and Marrs will be sentenced at the same court on Thursday, June 24.

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