TWO police officers were almost seriously injured as they attempted to detain an offender who was at the wheel of a van in a supermarket car park.

PC Sloan could have been crushed between the door of the Ford Transit and metal railings at the Aldi in Boscombe due to the driving of Ben Michael Christopher Defaye.

Fellow officer PC Davis found himself half-in and half-out of the van, which posed an “obvious and serious risk he might be thrown out of the car and potentially sustained very serious injuries”.

Defaye, aged 31, was eventually detained after being tasered by police, Bournemouth Crown Court was told on Thursday, June 16.

Judge William Mousley QC, who jailed the defendant for 20 months, said: “There was the obvious danger you caused to police officers carrying out their duty.”

Prosecuting, Ed Wylde told the court the Ford Transit had been taken without the consent of its owner in Bournemouth town centre on April 16.

The following day Defaye, of Bath Road, Bournemouth, was seen with the van, alongside another male, in the Aldi car park in Palmerston Road. They were said to be trying to falsify the vehicle’s number plate.

Bournemouth Echo: Police cordon at Aldi after the incidentPolice cordon at Aldi after the incident

Police attended and the defendant got in the van and started the vehicle.

Mr Wylde said Defaye reversed and swerved the Transit at speed.

“As the vehicle reversed, he (PC Sloan) was hit by the door and dragged approximately six feet,” the prosecutor said.

The court heard that the door hit him on the knee and the defendant crashed the van into the railings near the loading area.

Mr Wylde said the officer described being “lucky” that he was not trapped between the door and the railings.

Meanwhile, PC Davis was “laying across the front bench with his legs dangling out of the door”.

“Mr Defaye went backwards and forwards with PC Davis hanging out of the door,” Mr Wylde said.

“Eventually Tasers were deployed and he was detained.”

When the defendant was searched, police found a yellow Kinder Egg shell containing five snap bags of cocaine.

Defaye pleaded guilty to aggravated vehicle taking, driving while disqualified and possession of cocaine at an earlier hearing.

Richard Martin, mitigating, said his client was clean from drugs since being remanded in custody.

“In his sober state of mind he is able to look back and he tells me he is ashamed of his behaviour,” Mr Martin said.

“Not only the police officers but all the other people he has offended against.”

Bournemouth Echo: The sentencing hearing took place at Bournemouth Crown CourtThe sentencing hearing took place at Bournemouth Crown Court

Mr Martin said that as the defendant, who has mild schizophrenia, ADHD and autism, started to move the van “his foot slipped when it was on the pedal and he simply lost control of the van and allowed it to continue”.

The dangerous driving continued as he was “not thinking clearly at all”.

There was “very little to say in relation to the offences themselves”, Mr Martin said.

Defaye, who had 29 previous convictions for 73 offences, was disqualified from driving for five years and 10 months in addition to the custodial sentence.

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