Community service for hammer attack on police car

The defendant smashed a police car with a claw hammer. Pic: Met Police

The defendant smashed a police car with a claw hammer. Pic: Met Police

A man who smashed a police car with a claw hammer has been sentenced at Croydon Crown Court.

Richard Lee Taylor, 20, of no fixed address, was sentenced to two years of community service after destroying windows on a police car while officers were present.

The court heard that Taylor asked the police officers “do you want to have some fun?” before he attacked their car.

As the officers tried to escape from the defendant, he ran after their vehicle and inflicted more damage to their car.

The officers called for assistance and when they arrived at the scene Taylor had discarded the weapon.

Prosecuting, Shekinah Anson, told the court: “For some unknown reason he just lost it, if I can put it in those terms.”

She said there had been no physical harm to the police officers, but there was a great “fear of harm.”

The defendant has five earlier convictions and has previously spent time behind bars for burglary and carrying a Swiss army knife.

Defending, Sara Thorne, said Taylor was “unhappy” and “surprised” by his actions.

However, Judge Tanzer said: “I agree that you were planning to use the hammer and were laying in wait.”

Judge Tanzer said he was not surprised that the defendant had spent four months in custody following his arrest, given the nature of his previous offences.

“The question I ask, is how the public best can be protected from the difficulties that you face?”

Judge Tanzer told the defendant: “It may be that you have an attitude problem towards the police. However, you are under 21 and you seem remorseful. You pleaded guilty at the first opportunity possible and the four months in custody may have served you a lesson.”

In addition he was ordered to attend a resolve and thinking skills program and 18 months of supervision.

By Marthe Holkestad and Frida Meinking

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