Man with Hepatitis C lunged at police officer with a syringe

King's Lynn magistrates' court. Picture: Chris Bishop

King's Lynn magistrates' court. Picture: Chris Bishop - Credit: Archant

A man with Hepatitis C lunged at a police officer with a syringe he had used to inject heroin, a court has heard.

On July 8, Valdas Patronas, 49, was found by a police officer sat in a garden of a property in King's Lynn injecting the drug into his ankle.

Prosecutor Fred Sagoe said Patronas lunged at the officer with the syringe pointed at him.

Giving evidence in King's Lynn magistrates' court, PC Gareth Cranstoun said he was stood about one metre away from Patronas and used a defensive kick against him to create distance.

He said Patronas rolled to the floor, picked up the needle and lunged at him again.

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PC Cranstoun then pointed his taser at Patronas which lead to him placing the needle on the ground and he was subsequently arrested.

Mr Sagoe said in a police interview carried out the next day, Patronas revealed he had Hepatitis C and was aware the disease could be transferable through needles.

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In court, Patronas, of Gaywood Hall Drive, King's Lynn, denied lunging and pointing the syringe at the officer.

He told magistrates that the police officer was stood three to four metres away.

Patronas said he thought the officer pointed the taser at him because he may have felt threatened after he kicked him.

He said as he rolled to the ground the needle was still in his hand and he injected the remainder of the drug into his arm before dropping it.

The court explained what the word 'lunge' meant to Patronas as he had difficulty understanding it, but he denied making that movement.

Hugh Cauthery, defending Patronas, asked the magistrates to be cautious as the defendant had difficulty expressing himself due to a language barrier.

Patronas, who is from Lithuania, did not have an interpreter.

Chairman of the bench Darren Gilkes said the magistrates found Patronas guilty of using threatening behaviour against the police officer.

He said they took into account the issues of language but added: 'We found this so severe that it might attract a custodial sentence.'

Patronas was released on bail and will appear in court for sentencing on November 17.

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