‘Man’s behaviour was like a chimpanzee’


The image of young man baring his teeth in contempt of a police officer made him think of a chimpanzee, a judge said last Thursday at Banbridge Magistrates Court.

And he described the behaviour of the 25-year-old as ‘absolutely disgusting’.

John Roy Davis, Ballykeel Road, Banbridge, was fined £200 for assault on a police officer on August 21 this year.

He was also fined £100 for resisting police and ordered to pay a £15 offender’s levy.

A public prosecutor said the ‘sorry state of affairs’ was fuelled by alcohol.

She explained that shortly before midnight the grandmother of the defendant reported to police that the defendant had been causing havoc at her daughter’s home.

The prosecutor said Davis and his mother had been consuming wine together when there was a disagreement between them.

When police arrived there was disarray in the house.

The defendant was taken into custody and on route to the custody suite he began to kick out at a constable while in the rear of the police vehicle.

Davis was highly intoxicated and the constable received no injury with the defendant attempting to bite him.

A barrister representing the defendant said the police officer has confirmed that although there was an attempt to bite no contact was made.

He added that as disgraceful as the matter was Davis was showing contempt to the officer rather than a bite.

The solicitor said that this was his client’s fifth appearance in court for these charges and on the previous four occasions he had been accompanied by his mother but she was not here this time because she was sick.

He explained that Davis had mental health issues and suffered from depression and anxiety which was acerbated by an alcohol problem.

He had been referred by his GP to an addiction facility.

Deputy District Judge Liam McStay said that when he heard the facts about the disgraceful behaviour towards police he immediately thought this crossed the custody threshold and the next step for the defendant was to go to jail.

He said that he had a picture in his mind of a chimpanzee baring its teeth and it was ‘absolutely disgusting’ for the defendant to show that sort of contempt.

The judge added that he was also concerned that the next time Davis got drunk he would bite someone.

He told the defendant he was ‘turning into a horrible person’ but the fact he was on probation was some comfort to the court.

Judge McStay warned Davis that if he got into these circumstances again it would simply be the question of how long he would be sent to custody.