Lancashire TelegraphBurnley road rage teen targeted cycling police chief (From Lancashire Telegraph)

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Burnley road rage teen targeted cycling police chief

A ROAD rage teenage driver repeatedly targeted a cyclist and left him fearing for his life.

Burnley Crown Court heard how unbeknown to Benjamin Harrison, 18, his victim was police inspector Martin Melvin.

Nine times he almost mowed down DI Melvin, aiming for him on the pavement, striking his handle-bars, forcing him off his bike into trees, threatening to kill him and hurling stones and coins at him.

The victim had no escape route and had no choice but to continue his journey on the almost deserted road, the court heard.

Mr Melvin, who had just left Burnley police station, arrived at his home 20 minutes after his prolonged ordeal visibly shaking.

He had taken Harrison’s registration number and the defendant was later arrested.

Harrison, of Low Bank, Burnley, admitted dangerous driving in Accrington Road, Burnley, and common assault.

Recorder Graham Wood, QC, who said Mr Melvin was a “bit of an unfortunate choice of victim”, gave him nine months in jail, suspended for two years, with 12 months supervision and 100 hours unpaid work. He was banned from driving for two years and must pay £750 costs.

Recorder Wood told the defendant he had been “very fortunate indeed” to keep his freedom and warned him not to let his family and himself down.

Sarah Statham, prosecuting, said Harrison did not know his victim was a detective inspector and behaved as he did because his victim was a cyclist.

DI Melvin, in his cycling gear and helmet, was travelling from Burnley towards Accrington on the evening of July 3, when Harrison pulled alongside him, sounded his horn and began to shout loudly.

During the incident Harrison came into contact with the victim’s handlebars, forced him to veer on the grass verge, waved a clenched fist towards DI Melvin and shouted: “Get off the road. I will run you off the road. I will kill you. Get off the road.”

He also sounded his horn repeatedly, threw stones and drove straight at the victim from about 10 yards in front of him.

The prosecutor said the defendant was arrested at his parents’ home.

He asked officers: “Can I not just apologise?”

Harrison was questioned twice but was not entirely frank on either occasion, the court was told.

In his first interview, he clai-med the cyclist made a gesture and at first he thought it was someone he knew.

The hearing heard how in his second interview, Harrison made further admissions and said he had turned round twice.

Comments (18)

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12:19pm Tue 2 Feb 10

Markr says...

Isnt it funny that when its the otehr way around and the police are bullying innocent people nothing comes of it...
Isnt it funny that when its the otehr way around and the police are bullying innocent people nothing comes of it... Markr
  • Score: 0

3:28pm Tue 2 Feb 10

happycyclist says...

Markr wrote:
Isnt it funny that when its the otehr way around and the police are bullying innocent people nothing comes of it...
You tit.

This moron could have, and seemingly tried to, kill someone on a bike. The fact that it was a police officer is irrelevant. He should have been locked up for attempted murder.
[quote][p][bold]Markr[/bold] wrote: Isnt it funny that when its the otehr way around and the police are bullying innocent people nothing comes of it...[/p][/quote]You tit. This moron could have, and seemingly tried to, kill someone on a bike. The fact that it was a police officer is irrelevant. He should have been locked up for attempted murder. happycyclist
  • Score: 1

5:02pm Tue 2 Feb 10

lachman says...

Totally agree happycyclist, very common this type of behaviour he should be sent out on a bike for a week to see how dangerous life is for a cyclist!!
Totally agree happycyclist, very common this type of behaviour he should be sent out on a bike for a week to see how dangerous life is for a cyclist!! lachman
  • Score: 0

5:20pm Tue 2 Feb 10

DaveBurnley says...

Recorder Graham Wood, QC, who said Mr Melvin was a “bit of an unfortunate choice of victim”.

Does that mean then that if the injured party had not been a police officer, nothing would have been done?
Recorder Graham Wood, QC, who said Mr Melvin was a “bit of an unfortunate choice of victim”. Does that mean then that if the injured party had not been a police officer, nothing would have been done? DaveBurnley
  • Score: 0

6:51pm Tue 2 Feb 10

Wellingtonia says...

It seems that yet again, this sentance is unduly light. A suspended jail term ? Banned from driving for two years. It beggars belief what sort of a kid this Benjamin Harrison is -- is he so backwards that he does this sort of thing to a cyclist ? Is he ' a full shilling? ' Looks to me to be a bit of a looneytunes, and thanks to a lenient Judge, he is still out there. Do you REALLY think someone like this nutter is going to abide by a two year driving ban? Dear Gods what sort of wierdos do they pass on the Driving Test these days? When was that, by the way, last year, the year before? I wonder what sort of employer would give employment to this piece of scum. This bas**** needs locking up.
It seems that yet again, this sentance is unduly light. A suspended jail term ? Banned from driving for two years. It beggars belief what sort of a kid this Benjamin Harrison is -- is he so backwards that he does this sort of thing to a cyclist ? Is he ' a full shilling? ' Looks to me to be a bit of a looneytunes, and thanks to a lenient Judge, he is still out there. Do you REALLY think someone like this nutter is going to abide by a two year driving ban? Dear Gods what sort of wierdos do they pass on the Driving Test these days? When was that, by the way, last year, the year before? I wonder what sort of employer would give employment to this piece of scum. This bas**** needs locking up. Wellingtonia
  • Score: 0

7:26pm Tue 2 Feb 10

chrislancs says...

His attitude just beggars belief. we all know what needs doing, The English Democrats are the only party that have said they will sort out the lenient judges.
chris reid ppc
English Democrats
Hyndburn
His attitude just beggars belief. we all know what needs doing, The English Democrats are the only party that have said they will sort out the lenient judges. chris reid ppc English Democrats Hyndburn chrislancs
  • Score: 0

7:38pm Tue 2 Feb 10

puzzle bob says...

DaveBurnley wrote:
Recorder Graham Wood, QC, who said Mr Melvin was a “bit of an unfortunate choice of victim”. Does that mean then that if the injured party had not been a police officer, nothing would have been done?
I was thinking that myself when I read that part of the story.

But yes it does seem that if it wasn't a police officer on the bike then th driver may have got away with it.

How can ANY victim be an unfortunate choice?
[quote][p][bold]DaveBurnley[/bold] wrote: Recorder Graham Wood, QC, who said Mr Melvin was a “bit of an unfortunate choice of victim”. Does that mean then that if the injured party had not been a police officer, nothing would have been done?[/p][/quote]I was thinking that myself when I read that part of the story. But yes it does seem that if it wasn't a police officer on the bike then th driver may have got away with it. How can ANY victim be an unfortunate choice? puzzle bob
  • Score: 0

9:54pm Tue 2 Feb 10

bubble of reason says...

Its a CYCLE !
What goes around comes around!
Bet D I Melvin remembers!
Its a CYCLE ! What goes around comes around! Bet D I Melvin remembers! bubble of reason
  • Score: 0

11:46am Wed 3 Feb 10

blackburn south says...

happycyclist wrote:
Markr wrote: Isnt it funny that when its the otehr way around and the police are bullying innocent people nothing comes of it...
You tit. This moron could have, and seemingly tried to, kill someone on a bike. The fact that it was a police officer is irrelevant. He should have been locked up for attempted murder.
I can only gather from this sentence that the magistates don`t like cyclists.
[quote][p][bold]happycyclist[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Markr[/bold] wrote: Isnt it funny that when its the otehr way around and the police are bullying innocent people nothing comes of it...[/p][/quote]You tit. This moron could have, and seemingly tried to, kill someone on a bike. The fact that it was a police officer is irrelevant. He should have been locked up for attempted murder.[/p][/quote]I can only gather from this sentence that the magistates don`t like cyclists. blackburn south
  • Score: 0

12:01pm Wed 3 Feb 10

blackburn south says...

Sorry not magistates Recorder - part-time judge - don`t give up your day job.
Sorry not magistates Recorder - part-time judge - don`t give up your day job. blackburn south
  • Score: 0

1:48pm Wed 3 Feb 10

midas says...

bit of an "unfortunate choice of victim". I think the meaning was that he had picked on the wrong sort of person. Someone that is prepared to make a statement and go to Court. Someone who is used to making "statements" and giving evidence. Someone who had the wherewithall to take down the registration number.

Why make such an issue of something that was obviously a humerous comment. Whenever there is an offence committed against an off duty policeman the same comments are made. Likewise if you picked a fight with a martial arts expert.
bit of an "unfortunate choice of victim". I think the meaning was that he had picked on the wrong sort of person. Someone that is prepared to make a statement and go to Court. Someone who is used to making "statements" and giving evidence. Someone who had the wherewithall to take down the registration number. Why make such an issue of something that was obviously a humerous comment. Whenever there is an offence committed against an off duty policeman the same comments are made. Likewise if you picked a fight with a martial arts expert. midas
  • Score: 0

7:11pm Wed 3 Feb 10

moggy669 says...

Pathetic sentence, as usual.
Pathetic sentence, as usual. moggy669
  • Score: 0

7:16pm Wed 3 Feb 10

mys says...

Not all police are bad guys,same as the young ones of today.
Not all police are bad guys,same as the young ones of today. mys
  • Score: 0

8:50pm Wed 3 Feb 10

somenoware says...

This sentence does not fit the crime (as usual).

This low life is not fit to be on the planet,nevermind the highway

He should have been banned from driving for life, the vehicle taken away and crushed (preferably with him still at the wheel)

The lawmakers need to get a grip & fast !!!
This sentence does not fit the crime (as usual). This low life is not fit to be on the planet,nevermind the highway He should have been banned from driving for life, the vehicle taken away and crushed (preferably with him still at the wheel) The lawmakers need to get a grip & fast !!! somenoware
  • Score: 0

4:03pm Thu 4 Feb 10

janet dickinson says...

is this not attempted murder being run of the road ?
my husband is a cyclist and if he was run off the road by this low life
i would pursue it further
is this not attempted murder being run of the road ? my husband is a cyclist and if he was run off the road by this low life i would pursue it further janet dickinson
  • Score: 0

11:49pm Wed 10 Feb 10

working chap says...

"nine months in jail, suspended for two years, with 12 months supervision and 100 hours unpaid work. He was banned from driving for two years and must pay £750 costs. "
Why is this animal not in jail? Where is the point in a pathetically lenient sentence like this?
"nine months in jail, suspended for two years, with 12 months supervision and 100 hours unpaid work. He was banned from driving for two years and must pay £750 costs. " Why is this animal not in jail? Where is the point in a pathetically lenient sentence like this? working chap
  • Score: 0

4:26pm Fri 12 Feb 10

downfader says...

Just read about this through the CTC site. Its another example of a dangerous individual being given carte blanche to do what ever he likes, and now knows that effectively he can get away with any kind of antisocial behaviour or threats as long as it isnt "Plod".
.
I'll bet you 50p he's bragging about this.
.
The worst thing they ever did in British Law was to remove charges of manslaughter and murder with an automobile/vehicle. All a driven often has to say is "I didnt see them" in most other instances, and Magistrates and Judges are often serious car enthusiasts - there is no empathy upon sentancing.
Just read about this through the CTC site. Its another example of a dangerous individual being given carte blanche to do what ever he likes, and now knows that effectively he can get away with any kind of antisocial behaviour or threats as long as it isnt "Plod". . I'll bet you 50p he's bragging about this. . The worst thing they ever did in British Law was to remove charges of manslaughter and murder with an automobile/vehicle. All a driven often has to say is "I didnt see them" in most other instances, and Magistrates and Judges are often serious car enthusiasts - there is no empathy upon sentancing. downfader
  • Score: 0

5:39am Sat 13 Feb 10

TieDyeSteave says...

Writing from the USA, I am of course saddened that this would happen in Britain, but I am hardly surprised; no nation has a monopoly on stupidity of this sort. Cyclists on this side of the water look yearningly at the more bicycle friendly conditions in Europe.

Using my bike as my primary form of transportation, I have experienced just about every form of discourtesy from the motoring public, but mildly: I have been honked at and hollered at, but ALMOST never actually endangered. (Curiously, the hollerers either choose their insults with the wrong gender or the wrong sexual preference; I'm waiting to be called a lesbian, just for the novelty of having one of those pitiable blokes get both wrong at once!)

It's good that the cyclist was a police officer. We could wish that there was always a constable right there when these things happen, but that would require giving each of us the sort of protection accorded heads of state; it's simply not going to happen. What has happened, however, is a very public reminder that behaviour of this sort cannot always escape police notice.

ONCE, when I got passed unsafely at high speed up a blind hill, there was actually a radar trap right over the crest - just that once. My mates found that a good reason to raise a glass. Justice may be slow, or random, or whatever; but when it happens, let's cheer!
Writing from the USA, I am of course saddened that this would happen in Britain, but I am hardly surprised; no nation has a monopoly on stupidity of this sort. Cyclists on this side of the water look yearningly at the more bicycle friendly conditions in Europe. Using my bike as my primary form of transportation, I have experienced just about every form of discourtesy from the motoring public, but mildly: I have been honked at and hollered at, but ALMOST never actually endangered. (Curiously, the hollerers either choose their insults with the wrong gender or the wrong sexual preference; I'm waiting to be called a lesbian, just for the novelty of having one of those pitiable blokes get both wrong at once!) It's good that the cyclist was a police officer. We could wish that there was always a constable right there when these things happen, but that would require giving each of us the sort of protection accorded heads of state; it's simply not going to happen. What has happened, however, is a very public reminder that behaviour of this sort cannot always escape police notice. ONCE, when I got passed unsafely at high speed up a blind hill, there was actually a radar trap right over the crest - just that once. My mates found that a good reason to raise a glass. Justice may be slow, or random, or whatever; but when it happens, let's cheer! TieDyeSteave
  • Score: 0

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