Jailed: Man who headbutted police officer before stealing his car

Tom Powell
Headbutt: Tony Turner assaulted the officer after a breathalyser test: Essex Police

A man who attacked a police officer and stole his car in east London has been jailed.

Tony Turner, 36, was approached by the officer after he was spotted near the scene of a BMW which had crashed into a hedge in Chigwell.

But after undergoing a breathalyser test he lashed out, headbutting the officer and punching him in the head several times.

Turner then jumped into his car, which had a police dog inside, and drove off.

Essex Police said the car was later found in Frinton Road, Romford, with the police dog inside unharmed.

The officer suffered minor injuries in the attack in October 2015 and received hospital treatment before being discharged.

Turner, who had no driving licence or insurance, was arrested three months later after trying to board a train to France.

He was jailed for two-and-a-half years and banned from driving for eight-and-a-half years at Chelmsford Crown Court on Friday.

T/Chief Superintendent Trevor Roe said: "Turner carried out a violent assault, head-butting a police officer who was carrying out his duties to keep the people of Essex safe.

"He got behind the wheel of a car without insurance or a licence and escaped by attacking a police officer and fleeing in his police car before attempting to leave the country and evade justice.

"We will not tolerate violence being used against our officers and I’m sure people across the county are as pleased as I am that Turner has been handed a substantial prison sentence and a driving ban that stretches close to a decade.”

Turner, from Dagenham, was given 18 months for assault and a 15 month sentence, to run concurrently, for aggravated vehicle taking. He was also sentenced to 12 months for furnishing false information to police to run consecutively.