Burnley rugby player got police officer in headlock during 'fracas'

Burnley Magistrates' Court
Burnley Magistrates' Court
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A Burnley rugby player got a police officer in a headlock when he was arrested after a drink-drive motorbike accident, a court heard.

Lloyd Standen was found to be more than twice the limit after he fell off the machine on an icy road and hit his head. He was detained by officers, “suddenly erupted” when told he was going to be held overnight and a “fracas” followed.

The town’s magistrates were told how the 23-year-old, who also works on the bar at Burnley Rugby Club, had downed three pints and two gin and tonics when he decided to ride the bike home. He blew 72 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath when he was tested. The legal limit is 35.

The defendant, of Albert Street, Burnley, admitted driving with excess alcohol on Queen Victoria Road in the town and common assault, on January 21st.

He was given a 12- month community order with 140 hours unpaid work and must pay £85 costs and an £85 victim surcharge. Standen was banned for 17 months and was also ordered to pay £50 compensation to his victim, PC Mark Crossley. Deputy District Judge Nalla Lawrence told him: “The assault on the policeman is a very serious matter.”

Probation officer Mr Elliot Smith, who interviewed the defendant, told the hearing Standen’s motorbike had previously been stolen, he was worried it would possibly get pinched again and took the decision to ride it back home.

The officer said Standen was arrested by officers after he fell off his bike. Mr Smith continued: “He had one of them in a headlock. They were being fairly physical in the arrest.” The officer, who said Standen felt remorse, regret and shame for the incident, added: “He can’t play rugby anymore because of his injuries from the accident.”

The defendant’s solicitor, Mr Nick Dearing said he had no previous convictions. Mr Dearing said: “Before this, he was pretty much of exemplary conduct. He is an active member of a reputable and respected rugby club.”

The solicitor said Standen did not deliberately inflict injuries. He went on: “There was no gratuitous use of violence. He co-operated when cuffed and taken to the police station.”