Off-duty officer halts yob attack

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AN OFF-duty police sergeant stepped in to halt an attack on a woman after spotting trouble from his north Derbyshire flat.

The officer heard shouting and swearing on Chatsworth Road, Chesterfield, and saw James Youds slap girlfriend Tracey Smalley across the face, knocking her to the ground.

“He collected his handcuffs and went outside. The defendant was continuing to be aggressive and was told he would be arrested, and they waited for uniformed officers to arrive,” prosecutor Becky Mahon told town magistrates.

Ms Smalley got up and was holding the left side of her face. She was then passed two wraps of heroin by Youds.

“He said: ‘It’s obvious I’ve done it, get me charged and gone’,” said Ms Mahon, adding the relationship was continuing.

Ms Smalley, who had a cut to her lip, declined medical treatment and refused to make a complaint of assault.

Youds, aged 31, of Chatsworth Road, told police he drank neat vodka before buying £20 worth of heroin, intending to inject it.

He admitted assault and possessing heroin on April 20, and theft of an £80 Firetrap jumper from the Co-op on April 28.

The court was told he had a long record of convictions for dishonesty linked to heroin addiction and was on a drug rehabilitation programme.

The bench imposed a six-week jail sentence suspended for 18 months, telling Youds he was lucky Ms Smalley was standing by him. Magistrates also gave him an 18-month probation supervision order, with £85 costs. The heroin seized will be destroyed.

“He was drinking a bottle of vodka every morning and using heroin, and he can’t remember the assault. It was a single blow in the main road.

“She says it came out of the blue. He started to walk off, she shouted ‘babe’ and he came back and helped her off the ground

“He is not predisposed to violence and he has stopped drinking,” said Jon Barber, for Youds.