Teen with Covid spat at police during 'one-man crime wave'

Jamie Smith has been sentenced to more than two years in a young offenders institute.

Jamie Smith has been sentenced to more than two years in a young offenders institute. - Credit: Norfolk Police

A 19-year-old spat at police officers despite knowing he had tested positive for Covid-19, following a "one-man crime wave" which saw him steal a swathe of cars.

Jamie Smith, of Devonshire Road in Great Yarmouth, appeared at Norwich Crown Court on Thursday, May 27, after pleading guilty in March to offences including harassment, theft, assault and a number of driving offences.

He was arrested in Rodney Road on January 31, when he spat at four police officers knowing he had tested positive for coronavirus.

Those officers were then forced to self-isolate as a result, Norfolk Police said.

That came after officers stopped him while he was driving a stolen Ford Fiesta in South Quay earlier that day.

Smith made off from police and managed to give them the slip, but the car was later found abandoned in Bethel Court. CCTV and witnesses later identified him as having driven through red lights and on the wrong side of the road.

During the investigation, police discovered Smith had been involved in three other incidents of cars stolen in the Great Yarmouth area.

He had also broken a restraining order on October 22 of last year and, on Boxing Day, Smith was driving a Nissan Almera in Devonshire Road when he became aggressive and deliberately crashed into a Ford Fiesta, causing its airbags to deploy.

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The 19-year-old was also disqualified from driving at the time.

After Smith pleaded guilty to four counts of assaulting an emergency worker at a Norwich Crown Court hearing in March, Recorder William Clegg QC said an immediate custodial sentence seemed inevitable.

On May 27, he was sentenced to a total of two years and six months in a young offenders institute, and also banned from driving for the same amount of time.

Inspector Paul McCarthy said: "The sentencing of Smith brings his one man crime wave to an end.

"His driving and behaviour was completely unacceptable and its pleasing to see the courts have dealt with him through a custodial sentence."

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