United Kingdom

'Angry' father is jailed for 23 months after forcing a traffic warden to EAT a parking ticket

A man who forced a traffic warden to eat a parking ticket has been jailed.  

Over a period of two month Alex Owers also drove to a petrol station, licked a protective screen separating him from cashiers, downed a miniature bottle of wine and coughed in a police officer's face.

Hull Crown Court heard that Owers attacked the parking warden after being issued a fine for parking illegally outside a café in Bridlington, Kingston upon Hull.

Alex Owers, 40, has been jailed after forcing a  parking ticket into a traffic warden's mouth 

The court was told that when he was confronted by an 'angry' Owers, the parking warden tried to walk away but was set upon.

Prosecuting, Sue Evans said: 'He [Owers] got him in a headlock and said, 'Eat it now, you can have it'. 

'He tried to force the ticket into his mouth and caused his gums to bleed. The civil servant tried to press his panic alarm but Owers stamped on his mobile phone and kicked him.'

Several members of the public tried to intervene, some even taking photos of Owers, but he pushed one man against his own car in front of his terrified children.

Owers was not arrested at the time, and was later identified from photographs, but his spree did not end there. 

Miss Evans told the court that despite being told several times by staff members that he would not be served after pressing his face against a protective plastic screen, Owers continued to do so and even licked it.

The prosecutor told the court: 'He told them to 'f*** off' and that there were no signs not to touch, but they pointed them out.

'He started eating a sandwich and dank a bottle of miniature wine. When he was arrested he agreed to pay for those items.'

The court heard that at the time, Owers was three times over the legal driving limit and had in his system 102mg of alcohol per 100ml of breath.

The incident happened on Kingston Road in Willerby, at the end of March 

During his time in the custody suite, Owers' crimes continued. Miss Evans told the court that he became 'argumentative' and 'said he had not done anything wrong.'

When asked by officers if he knew about the Covid-19 outbreak, he said 'yes'. He added that he had 'been to France and Italy, had a cough and was feverish'.

The court heard that Owers then proceeded to cough in a police officer's face.

Miss Evans said: 'The officer felt droplets of Mr Owers' saliva on his face.

'He was left worried and distressed about his health, and this continued for the next 14 days.'

In a statement read to the court, a member of staff from the petrol station said: 'This was very frightening. We are already under a lot of pressure and stress and things like this make our jobs so much harder.

'We are already concerned for our health. We was worried about what he was going to do next. You don't expect to be abused and sworn at while we are trying to do our jobs.'

The court heard that by carrying out the offences, Owers was in breach of a suspended sentence he was handed in October last year for wounding.

He also has previous convictions for assaulting an emergency worker and two racially aggravated public order offences.

Representing Owers, Mark Savage told the court that he is a dad-of-three, who since being in custody has got the better of an alcohol and gambling addiction.

He also said that when he was given a suspended prison sentence last year, Owers was ordered to complete 100 hours of unpaid work - of which he had already completed 85.

Mr Savage told the court: 'This is the first time he has ever been in prison and while there he has sought assistance to deal with his drinking and his gambling addiction.

'He now has an insight he didn't have before and there is no doubt that these offences are serious.

Owers was sentenced to 23 months in prison at Hull Crown Court after also coughing on an emergency worker 

'He knows that there has been an impact on his children as a result of his actions and knows that he has not only let himself down, but them too and that is something that causes him a great deal of distress.

'He has an insight into the fear and distress he has caused others. He is remorseful.'

Judge Nadim jailed Owers for 23 months, telling him that it was the courts' duty to protect emergency workers and people working during the pandemic.

He said: 'Civil service workers in the form of parking wardens will be protected by the courts as are the police who are doing a very difficult job in very difficult circumstances.

'The message needs to be loud and clear that this sort of conduct won't be tolerated by this court.'

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