Woman spat on officer after calling police out to Coach House pub, magistrates told
A WOMAN who spat in the face of a police officer after a fight in a pub has narrowly avoided a prison sentence.
Jessica Meechan, formerly of Filton and now of St Mark's Road, Easton, met officers with a "charge and a growl" after she called them to the Coach House in Easton, Bristol Magistrates' Court heard.
The 20-year-old, who claimed to have been robbed, resisted arrest after her volatile welcome, spitting at one officer and pinching another's thigh as she was taken away.
But after pleading guilty she was spared prison by District Judge Simon Cooper who read of her steps to reform her behaviour, despite a history of assaults on police.
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The court heard yesterday that police attended the pub at 2.30am on October 25, 2012, after a report that a fight had taken place.
Prosecuting, Chris Holland said: "The defendant was locked outside the premises when police arrived.
"The defendant proceeded to charge at the window of an unmarked police vehicle and growl."
The court heard Meechan then made threats about an unknown woman, saying: "I'm going to stab her up, I'll kill her next time."
While being restrained it was heard she spat at PC Lindsey Pendleton and pinched the thigh of a PC Gethin.
After taking her to the station, police said they waited until she was sober before interviewing her.
Mr Holland said: "She claimed she wasn't drunk and said two girls followed her into the toilet and stole her phone and £45.
"She wanted to call the police. The landlord threw her out. When the police arrived she said they were unhelpful and difficult and she claimed that she didn't assault the officers as described."
Graham Arnall, defending, said she had been keeping out of trouble in the four months it had taken for the incident to come to court.
He said: "The police have a difficult job when they turn up at 2.30am after a fight. What I do know is she was seen by a nurse in the police station and was found to have black eyes and swelling to her face. She mentioned she was beaten up in the toilets."
Judge Cooper heard how Meechan had breached a previous order for a similar offence.
He also heard of four previous convictions for assaulting police.
After warning Meechan that she could face a custodial sentence, Judge Cooper read a probation report outlining her progress.
He said: "You were the victim that night but you kicked off so quickly it was hard for them (police) to establish what happened.
"But I have now read about your background and what you're doing for yourself.
"You went back to your old ways. But the remorse and apology you expressed made up for it."
She was handed a community order with 12 months' supervision and 60 hours of unpaid work. She was also ordered to pay PC Pendleton £100 in compensation.