A 52-year-old Tower Hamlets man has been sentenced to prison after he was found guilty of using a dog to attack police officers.
Michael Izzard, of Cassilis Road, Canary Wharf, was sentenced at Snaresbrook Crown Court to 30 months in prison. He was also been banned from being in possession of a dog for 10 years.
The court heard that in March last year Izzard, who was with a female friend and his pit-bull terrier, was waiting for a train at Shadwell station when he was asked to put the dog on a leash by a member of the railway staff. He verbally abused the railway employee.
He was also heard using racist and inappropriate language towards a member of public. Izzard then instructed the dog to attack the man and also tried to punch him. When the pit-bull didn’t obey his order, Izzard also started kicking it.
British Transport Police were called to the station and tried to restrain and arrest Izzard. In doing so, the dog became aggressive and bit two of the officers, dragging one of them to the floor. The court heard that the female who had been travelling with Izzard managed to get a harness back on the dog and restrain it.
Izzard was later traced to his home address where he was arrested.
Detective Sergeant Dan Holmes said: “Izzard’s language and actions were appalling on that Sunday afternoon, which was witnessed by families and children. The events which unfolded clearly terrified people who witnessed it.
“The officers who were there to deal with the situation were unfortunately injured not to mention shaken up by the whole incident. We take animal cruelty extremely seriously, and will not tolerate any type of violence or abuse on the railway network. BTP will take every action to ensure that people who abuse the transport system are dealt with. I hope the sanctions imposed by the judge on Izzard will give him time to think about his actions in prison.”