Last week’s incident took place in the London Road car park (credit: Google Maps)
The warning has been issued after a man was given a suspended sentence for spitting at police officers and council workers in Barking.
He had been seen drinking alcohol in the London Road car park last Thursday but, when advised by council officers to dispose of the alcohol, he became aggressive and swore and spat at them.
Two police officers then arrived and he refused to cooperate with them. As the police arrested the man, he spat at them too.
He was charged and pleaded guilty to assault and given a six-week prison sentence, suspended for 12 months.
Councillor Margaret Mullane, Cabinet Member for Enforcement and Community Safety, said: “Spitting is disgusting at any time, let alone in the current situation and worse still against people going about their daily duties. I am really pleased that the court has taken a dim view on this and has made an example of the man.
“I am relieved that both the council and police officers didn’t come to further harm as nobody should be exposed to such risk when carrying out their daily duties ensuring we are all safe in the pandemic.
“I would like to say thank you to the police for acting so swiftly and to remind those who think it is okay to behave in such a socially unacceptable way, that we have a zero-tolerance approach to such behaviour – we will find you and where possible, prosecute.”
Barking and Dagenham Council has Public Space Protection Orders (PSPOs) in Heathway, Barking town centre and Broad Street. Those who spit within the PSPO areas face being prosecuted with Fixed Penalty Notice (FPN) by the council or police.
Spitting at another person is a criminal offence no matter where it occurs and those responsible could be charged by police and prosecuted.
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