A MAN assaulted by a police officer in an incident likened to a ‘form of torture’ by a judge said his experiences left him traumatised and distrustful of authority.

David Healer was left screaming and begging for a doctor after then Durham Constabulary sergeant, Stephen Harvey, used excessive force against him at Peterlee Police Station.

In 2012, then Durham Constabulary sergeant Stephen Harvey was found guilty of assaulting David Healer at Peterlee Police Station.

Mr Healer was left screaming and begging for a doctor after the officer used excessive force against him while attempting to book him in.

CCTV footage captured Mr Healer’s torment as his arm was wrestled up his back and his wrist grabbed and twisted with force.

A civilian detention officer also convicted of assault in relation to the events later had his conviction overturned.

Mr Healer, from Seaham, said the assault had left him “in a right state”, adding: “I’ve heard my screams on the video and they’re horrible.

“I was under the influence of medication when it happened, people think I was drunk but I’d had my angina spray and it knocks me for six.

“I kept asking them to take me to a cell but they just dragged me up – if I had done the same thing to them, I could have got five or six years.

“Now, if there was a police officer outside of my shop on fire, I wouldn’t run out with a bucket and I wouldn’t trust them again.

“Every time I’ve been in a police station since, I’ve panicked, just being there is scary because on that day, I really thought I was going to die, no ifs or buts about it.

“These figures do not surprise me but I believe that they’re probably even higher, I think there’s a lot that does not come to light or doesn’t end in arrest.

“In a situation like mine, it’s often your word against theirs and they’re police officers and you’re seen as a criminal so it’s hard to get believed.”