Man who choked police officer jailed for six years

A man who choked a police officer has been jailed for six years, the Crown Office has said.

John Dow, 36, attacked PC Paul Gavan when he and a colleague responded to a disturbance in Coatbridge, North Lanarkshire, on July 26 last year.

Dow grabbed the officer by the neck as he attempted to arrest him in Mitchell Street and they fell into a hedge, where he continued choking and punching the 33-year-old.

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The officer’s colleague called for back-up and tried to intervene but PC Gavan already lost consciousness shortly before other police arrived.

Man who choked police officer jailed for six years

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Dow, from Coatbridge, then grabbed another police officer around the neck when he let go of PC Gavan, before he was arrested.

Dow was initially accused of attempting to murder the police officer but pleaded guilty to the reduced charge of assault to severe injury and danger of life, as well as a separate assault to injury.

He pleaded guilty at the High Court in Glasgow last month ahead of trial.

He was then sentenced at the same court in Glasgow on Thursday.

David Green, procurator fiscal for homicide and major crime, said: “John Dow carried out a brutal and sustained attack on a police officer who was simply doing his job. The sentence imposed today reflects the gravity of the offences committed.

“Assaults on police officers are taken extremely seriously and prosecutors will take action to protect their safety.

“We work closely with Police Scotland to ensure the effective investigation and prosecution of these offences.”

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