A man has been jailed for assaulting a police officer after he was caught stealing items from a North Yorkshire supermarket.

North Yorkshire Police said they arrested Lee Alderson, 32, from Scotton, after receiving a call to attend the Co-op supermarket in Colburn last month (February 22).

Alderson had fallen and hit his head while stealing items from the shop, and had been behaving aggressively towards other members of the public.

After being arrested, he assaulted an officer by kicking them in the chest as he was being place in a police vehicle.

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Police said Alderson had to be taken to a hospital in Darlington after suffering the head injury, and behaved aggressively towards medical staff while there.

They also said he spat in the face of a police while waiting for a nurse to check his condition, and abused a healthcare professional the following day.

An NYP spokesperson said: “A man, Lee Alderson, 32, from Scotton, had fallen and hit his head while stealing items from the shop, and was behaving aggressively towards members of the public.

“He was arrested, but kicked an officer in the chest as he was being placed in a police vehicle.

“Due to the head injury sustained from falling in the shop before police arrived, the officers took Alderson to hospital in Darlington.

“On arrival, he continued to behave aggressively, shouting and swearing at members of the public and medical staff.

“While waiting for a nurse to check him over, he spat in the face of a police officer. The following day he also abused a health care professional while in custody in Harrogate Police Station.

Alderson was charged, and at York Magistrates Court on Friday (March 24) plead guilty to stealing from the shop, assaulting two emergency workers and using threatening language on two occasions.

He was sentenced to a total of 36 weeks in prison.

Magistrates told Alderson the offence was aggravated by his record of previous offending, and because of his deliberate attacks on public servants carrying out public duties.

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“Assaults against police officers and staff will never be tolerated, and we have a robust process in place for investigating offences and bringing those responsible to justice,” an NYP spokesperson added.

“If you assault a police officer or any other emergency services worker, you will be dealt with to the fullest extent of the law, which will frequently end in a prison sentence. That’s how serious this offence is.”

Following his release, he will be subject to a Community Behaviour Order which will require him to attend a substance misuse recovery service, and to not have an open container of alcohol in any public place.