• Thu. Jun 13th, 2024

Police officer driving suspect on Oxford road was kicked in head


Sep 4, 2022

A woman shouted that the police officers who had nicked her for burglary were ‘paedophiles’ – before kicking the constable chauffeuring her to the police station in the back of the head.

Nichole Smith, 41, had been arrested after refusing to leave a house in Eastern Avenue, Oxford, on October 16, 2019.

She was drunk, aggressive towards the officers called to the scene and was arrested on suspicion of burglary.

The Oxford woman was said to have protested loudly she was not guilty of burglary. That was not without cause, given the Crown Prosecution Service subsequently offered not evidence to support the burglary charge brought more than two years after the incident.

Sentencing Smith at Oxford Crown Court on Friday, Recorder Michael Roques noted the fact the burglary rap was dropped, but added that the police officers called to the property had only been ‘doing what they are employed to do’.

Smith’s hands were cuffed behind her back and she was placed into the back seat of a police car, with an officer sat beside her.

She managed to unbuckle her seat belt, although it was re-buckled by the officer.

The suspect began shouting ‘rape’. She accused the two constables of being racist and ‘paedophiles’.

She wriggled down into her seat then kicked PC Ben Renshaw, who was driving, in the back of the head. At the time, they were on the Southern Bypass road and traffic was heavy. Smith was not wearing shoes.

Prosecutor Liam Gregory said: “This was an assault in as dangerous circumstances as you could imagine and could have caused a serious accident on the road.”

No injury was caused to the officer. They managed to get Smith to the police station but behaviour was so bad she bypassed the booking-in procedure and was taken straight to a cell.

Interviewed the following day, she apologised for lashing out at the officer.

Recorder Roques told Smith on Friday: “In short, you were behaving in a thoroughly obnoxious manner to two officers who were simply doing their job.”

He accepted that she had not been deliberately trying to kick the officer in the head.

It had been a ‘troubled time’ in her life, he added. “It seems from the author of the pre-sentence report that to some extent you were seeking to self-medicate with alcohol.”

The judge imposed an 18 month community order with 20 probation sessions, a six month mental health treatment programme and 150 hours of unpaid work.

Smith, of Gladstone Road, Oxford, pleaded guilty to assaulting an emergency worker and failing to attend a previous crown court hearing.

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This story was written by Tom Seaward. He joined the team in 2021 as Oxfordshire's court and crime reporter.

To get in touch with him email: Tom.Seaward@newsquest.co.uk

Follow him on Twitter: @t_seaward