Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Judge Gives SIXTH Last Chance to Offender

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Judge Gives SIXTH Last Chance to Offender

Article excerpt

Byline: Gareth Lightfoot Court Reporter gareth.lightfoot@eveninggazette.co.uk

A REPEAT offender who waved a knife in the street and spat blood at police walked from court after flouting a suspended prison sentence SIX TIMES.

Keith Sheraton carried on offending with a prison sentence hanging over his head, and the courts kept giving him chances.

By the time he appeared in the dock this week, he wanted to be locked up.

A Teesside judge said people might be "astonished" to think someone could breach a suspended jail term so many times and not go to prison.

But he gave Sheraton a community order, saying this would benefit him and the public more than a short spell inside.

Sheraton, 32, was given a nine-month prison sentence suspended for two years in April 2012 for affray and possessing an offensive weapon.

He'd drunk 20 pints of lager, waved a craft knife in the street and a man was slashed in a struggle.

He breached the suspended sentence three times for drunken behaviour, twice for shoplifting. He was at Teesside Crown Court this week after admitting assaulting a PC on the night of December 16 last year.

He was seen bleeding at his home in Letitia House, Letitia Street, Middlesbrough, when police were called to reports of a fight.

He was drunk, abusive and aggressive, clenching his fists and grinding his teeth, said prosecutor Jenny Haigh.

He struggled as he was arrested, spitting blood and phlegm at officers at the house and police station cells, falsely claiming he had hepatitis C. Sheraton, now of Oakworth Green, Beechwood, Middlesbrough, had 35 previous offences and had served prison sentences.

Jonathan Walker, defending, said: "His conduct towards the police officers was ugly, inexcusable and deplorable." But he asked the court to give Sheraton "one final opportunity".

He said Sheraton had good sides but his appetites for drink and drugs made him volatile. …

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