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Jail for man who spat at bus driver and police officer

Coronavirus: Aggressive outburst followed instruction to board bus using middle doors

01 May 2020
William Cawley (Met Police)
William Cawley (Met Police)


A man has been jailed for spitting at a London bus driver and a police officer and claiming he had coronavirus.

William Cawley spat at the Transport for London (TfL) worker at Uxbridge bus station after he was told to use the middle door in line with social distancing rules.

The driver called nearby police officers for help. Cawley, 23, tried to run away but was arrested and taken into custody where he became violent again and spat at a police officer. He told officers he was infected with COVID-19.

Cawley was sentenced to 10 months behind bars after pleading guilty to two counts of common assault at Uxbridge Magistrates Court on 22 April.

Detective Chief Inspector Fiona Martin said: “I am pleased with this sentence as it reflects the gravity of the offences Cawley committed Whether the victim is a bus driver, a police officer or of any other occupation, such offences are never acceptable. Spitting is a vile and disgusting act, and will be dealt with severely, especially in these unprecedented times.”

Siwan Hayward, director of compliance, policing and on-street services at TfL, said: “We welcome Cawley’s sentencing and hope it sends a strong message. Spitting at our heroic frontline workers at any time – especially during this crisis – is absolutely shocking, and this incident left a valued colleague feeling very shaken.”


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