A MAN charged with criminal damage and obstruction of an enforcement officer refused to stand in the dock at Poole Magistrates' Court yesterday. (Jan 19)

Gary Sherborne, of Walpole Road, Boscombe, told magistrates he was in court to represent himself and felt he'd be too "confined" to do so from the dock.

When the court clerk told the 55-year-old that all defendants appearing before the court must stand in the dock, Sherborne, again declined.

Sherborne was then told it would not be acknowledged that he was 'before the court' if he maintained his position, and a warrant for his arrest would likely be issued.

Sherborne again declined and left the court building.

The defendant is charged with damaging a hoarding door belonging to Abrahim Hamad on January 2 this year.

He is also accused of resisting and obstruction of an enforcement officer/person who was engaged with executing a High Court writ.

Sherborne is yet to enter a plea in relation to these charges.

The charges relate to an alleged incident in Bournemouth, on January 2, when bailiffs moved to clear an unauthorised homeless encampment from land at Exeter Road.

The former Punshon Church site had been taken over by the Occupy Bournemouth group, and was housing a number of homeless people at the time. The encampment included some makeshift shelters stocked with food, clothing and first aid.

After a second eviction later that week, the Occupy Bournemouth camp shifted to the former coal yard site at Ashley Road, Boscombe, where it remains.