A yob claimed a police officer was hit in the head with a brick in “revenge” for the seizure of his friend’s scrambler bike.
Convicted cocaine dealer Ryan Blake and an unknown man armed themselves with a brick before seeking out a police car.
The pair set off on a stolen scrambler, before coming across a marked vehicle being driven by PC John Prescott, in Garston.
He and a colleague were responding to an incident and were heading along Speke Road, near the Horrocks Avenue junction.
But as they waited in traffic, moments before making a turn, the brick was hurled through the car’s rear windscreen.
It smashed the glass and struck PC Prescott in the back of the head, at around 3pm, on Friday, February 7 this year.
Prosecutors said Blake, 24, of Hughes Street, Garston, was the passenger on the orange and black Duke off-road bike.
However, Blake pleaded guilty to assault causing actual bodily harm on the basis he was not the one who threw the brick.
And he was jailed after claiming the attack was carried out in anger because of the way he had been treated by the force.
Liverpool Crown Court heard both men wore dark clothing and were masked, but Blake wore lighter clothes than the rider.
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Frank Dillon, prosecuting, said a witness saw the bike – without any licence plates – driving away after the attack, and gave a description of the two men matching the account of officers.
The witness saw the bike head towards a block of flats, then the two men walking away, and contacted police, who recovered the scrambler, which had been stolen in the Warrington area around 11 days previously.
An officer viewed dashcam footage taken from the witness’ car and identified Blake, who was arrested four days later and made no comment in interview.
Mr Dillon said swabs were taken from the bike and one swab from a handle bar grip revealed a DNA profile matching Blake’s DNA, with the chances of it not being his DNA “one in a billion”.
Mr Dillon said PC Prescott sustained a minor head injury, felt nauseous and suffered from headaches for three days.
The officer told the court the incident was “scary” because he was sitting in traffic, waiting to pull out onto a busy road.
PC Prescott said he was initially worried about getting back into a police car and as a result was more wary of motorbikes.
He said to be attacked “in such an underhand and unprovoked way” had also temporarily knocked his confidence.
Mr Dillon said the attack was a joint enterprise between the two men and from a sentencing point of view, it didn’t matter who actually threw the brick.
He said: “Though it’s common sense it was the passenger rather than the rider, it matters not.”
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Blake has four previous convictions for nine offences, including criminal damage and possession of cannabis.
In 2016 he was jailed for two and a half years for possession of cocaine and cannabis with intent to supply.
The court heard he was also convicted of drug driving and driving with no insurance in May last year.
Mr Dillon said: “The defendant says in his pre-sentence report it was in effect a revenge attack for his friend’s motorbike or scrambler bike being seized.”
Jonathan Duffy, defending, said his client maintained he didn’t throw the brick, despite an apparent “mix-up” in a pre-sentence report after he was interviewed by a probation officer, which might suggest otherwise.
Judge Anil Murray said: “I might have given him some credit for honesty, but I’m not going to hold that against him.”
Mr Duffy said: “He’s young, 24, he should know better, and accepts fully that his behaviour in getting involved in activity of this type is entirely unacceptable.”
He suggested the crime was a “reckless rather than a deliberate assault”, but accepted it was aggravated by the fact the victim was a police officer on duty.
Mr Duffy said: “The act – whoever it was that threw the brick – was not intended to cause injury to the police officer. It was intended to be thrown at the police car.”
The lawyer urged the judge to spare Blake jail and said he had not committed any offences since.
Judge Murray said Blake caused a minor head injury, but he also left PC Prescott worried about getting back in a police car and knocked his confidence.
He said there was “significant premeditation” as the brick was taken for the purpose of being thrown and the crime was seriously aggravated by the target.
Judge Murray said: “This was a deliberate attack against the police – police officers going about their public duties.”
He added: “The pre-sentence report says you committed this offence because you felt anger towards the police because of the way you perceived they had treated you.
“You say that you’re remorseful – I’m prepared to accept that. The background of you is unremarkable. I note your father is currently unwell and you are described as immature.”
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However, he told Blake police had been targeted and the offence was “just too serious” for anything other than an immediate jail sentence.
Jailing him for 16 months, the judge said: “This must carry a message that people who carry out attacks on the police will be sent to prison.”