Builder hurled bricks at po­lice in tense stand-off

Western Mail - - NEWS - LIZ DAY Re­porter liz.day@waleson­line.co.uk

ABUILDER hurled bricks at po­lice from a derelict build­ing dur­ing a 45-hour “stand­off” which in­volved more than 100 of­fi­cers and cost £18,000.

Christo­pher Fo­ley, who was wanted for re­call to pri­son, pulled his trousers and pants down while jeer­ing po­lice, telling them he might not come down for sev­eral months.

Cardiff Crown Court heard how the in­ci­dent started at 9.30am on June 5 when the de­fen­dant was spot­ted stand­ing on top of a derelict build­ing on Bridge Street in Tre­de­gar.

David Pugh, pros­e­cut­ing, said Fo­ley was wanted for re­call to pri­son at the time.

He told the court: “There fol­lowed a stand-off with the po­lice which lasted for 45 hours.”

Pros­e­cu­tors said he threw mis­siles, in­clud­ing stones and bricks, to­wards po­lice of­fi­cers, ve­hi­cles and a drone.

The court heard the firearms unit and two ne­go­tia­tors were de­ployed.

Mr Pugh said: “[The ne­go­tia­tors] made lit­tle progress with him, to be frank. He threw mis­siles at them.”

He added: “He threw half a house­brick, nar­rowly miss­ing an of­fi­cer’s head. He struck a po­lice van with stones and caused some dam­age.”

Pros­e­cu­tors said the derelict build­ing, which backed on to Fo­ley’s home, was next to an in­dus­trial es­tate and mem­bers of the pub­lic were walk­ing past.

Mr Pugh said: “He took his trousers and pants down.”

The court heard he mimed a sex act and there were “whis­tles, cheers and jeer­ing” from by­standers.

Fo­ley shouted to the po­lice: “F*** off. If any of you c***s come up here, I’ll smash a brick over your head so hard you’ll be lick­ing your own a***.”

Pros­e­cu­tors said he in­di­cated he might not come down un­til Oc­to­ber, but man­aged to sneak away into his own home, where he was ar­rested at 6.40am on June 7.

Mr Pugh told the court the op­er­a­tion took be­tween 700 and 900 hours of po­lice time, with an av­er­age of 15 to 20 of­fi­cers present at any one time.

He said 110 of­fi­cers were al­lo­cated dur­ing the 45-hour pe­riod at a cost of more than £18,000.

The court heard some of the busi­nesses on the neigh­bour­ing in­dus­trial es­tate were blocked off and lost money.

When he was in­ter­viewed, Fo­ley stated he thought Gwent Po­lice were “cor­rupt”.

He told of­fi­cers had taken 56 sleep­ing tablets and a box of Nuro­fen.

Mr Pugh said: “He also said he had been drink­ing a fair amount of lager. He re­ally did not re­mem­ber much of the in­ci­dent.”

Pros­e­cu­tors said he had been be­fore the courts for 68 pre­vi­ous of­fences and had a “long his­tory of dis­hon­esty”.

He was re­called on a sen­tence of three years and two months for wound­ing and was due to be re­leased in Jan­uary.

Fo­ley, 51, from Bridge Street in Tre­de­gar, ad­mit­ted af­fray, caus­ing crim­i­nal dam­age and out­rag­ing pub­lic de­cency.

Suzanne Payne, de­fend­ing, said he was badly as­saulted in 2015 and as­sessed as hav­ing a “se­vere brain in­jury”.

The court heard he was not able to sleep and harmed him­self, as well as dam­ag­ing his own prop­erty.

Ms Payne said he has re­ceived med­i­ca­tion fol­low­ing the as­sess­ment in pri­son and is now able to sleep prop­erly, as well as ap­pear­ing calmer.

The de­fence bar­ris­ter told the court her client is in a long-term re­la­tion­ship and feels “em­bar­rassed and ashamed” of his be­hav­iour.

Fo­ley was jailed for six months.

> Christo­pher Fo­ley dur­ing the stand-off with po­lice

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