Drunk Brit attacked airport staff and headbutted cop before Tenerife flight

A drunk Brit who attacked staff and headbutted a policeman at an airport has been sentenced.

Robert Smith, 45, became aggressive after he was barred from boarding his flight to Tenerife at Leeds Bradford Airport on May 18, 2022, when staff determined he'd had too much to drink.

He was handed a suspended prison sentence after appearing before magistrates on Monday (January 30).

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Jet2 staff saw Smith knock over a barstool as he left an airport boozer and headed towards his gate after the final call for the 4:20pm flight sounded, BBC reported.

Employees at the gate were suspicious but the hopeful holidaymaker denied being drunk and was allowed through.

However he was stopped from boarding after staff watched him bump into several glass panels on his way to the plane.

Police say Smith then turned violent after he was told he wasn't allowed on the plane and had to be restrained by bar staff and other passengers.

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Smith then headbutted the detective who had handcuffed him and had to be taken to a police van in a wheelchair after officers decided to use leg restraints as well.

Phil Ward, managing director at Jet2.com, said of the incident: "Disruptive passenger behaviour can lead to very serious consequences such as banning orders and financial penalties, and as this case proves, severe court action."

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Meanwhile Sergeant Anne Haydock, from West Yorkshire Police, said disruptive behaviour like Smith's "can be a potential risk to the safety of the aircraft and can also result in aircraft diversions that cause significant inconvenience and cost".

Smith admitted two counts of common assault and one count of assaulting an emergency services worker and appeared at Leeds Magistrate's Court for sentencing earlier this week.

As well as being handed an eight-month prison sentence, suspended for a year, he was ordered to do 250 hours of community service and pay compensation of £120 to each of his victims.


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