Burnley man hurled racial abuse at police officer

Burnley Magistrates' Court
Burnley Magistrates' Court

An "attack victim" hurled racial abuse at a police officer, after repeatedly raising his fist at him in 5am trouble outside a Burnley nightclub, a court heard.

Zachariah Beardsell, who claimed to have been assaulted in the club, was injured and bleeding and wanted police to investigate.

The 24-year-old had been aggressive to passers-by, was shouting and swearing and was PAVA sprayed after lunging at the officer, who feared for his safety.

Burnley magistrates were told the officer was very upset at the repeated abuse and so was the colleague with him.

Miss Rachael Yarwood (prosecuting) said police were called to outside a town centre night club at about 5am. The officer was directed to a taxi, where the defendant was said to have been causing problems. The driver motioned to the officer in a frustrated manner and the officer went to speak to Beardsell and the woman with him, who was shouting and crying.

The prosecutor said Beardsell was slurring his words, unsteady on his feet and not able to have a coherent conversation. He was bleeding from cuts to his face, but didn't want an ambulance.

He then lunged at the officer, who PAVA sprayed the defendant in the eyes and managed to detain him.

The prosecutor went on: "Whilst being transported, he continually racially abused the officer, causing him to feel extremely upset and alarmed. His colleague heard the abuse and was upset on his behalf."

Mr Glen Smith (defending) said Beardsell, who is in work, had no previous convictions. He had been on a night out with friends and appeared to have been the victim initially. The defendant and his girlfriend were trying to explain that he had been assaulted in the club. The situation was quite volatile.

Mr Smith said Beardsell wanted police to investigate what happened to him.

He added: "He has learned a very serious and salutary lesson from his behaviour. He says in his interview he can't recall using that language."

The defendant, of Helvellyn Drive, Burnley, admitted resisting police and racially aggravated intentional harassment/alarm/ distress on June 16th. He was fined £288, with a £30 victim surcharge and £85 costs.