Ex-soldier, 42, who mauled two female police officers in a drunken rampage and claimed he has undiagnosed PTSD laughs outside court after avoiding jail
- Craig Livesey bit two female police officers outside pub in Stockport last year
- The ex-soldier blamed the attacks on his trauma from combat in Afghanistan
An ex-soldier who mauled two female police officers in a drunken rampage and claimed he suffers from undiagnosed PTSD laughed outside court after avoiding jail.
Craig Livesey, 42, bit one of the female officers on the hand and the other on the leg as they and a male colleague stopped him for abusing passers-by outside a pub in Stockport last year.
One of the PCs was mauled with such force during the struggle that she feared Livesey had taken a lump of flesh with him.
The other PC said doctors told her a bite wound on her leg was ‘worse than any other bite she could have had’.
But Livesey, of Droylsden, Greater Manchester, claimed he was merely acting on his ‘fighting instinct’ instilled into him during army training, blaming his behaviour on being traumatised from his experiences of combat in Afghanistan.
Craig Livesey, 42, was pictured laughing outside Stockport Magistrates’ Court after avoiding jail for mauling two female police officers in a drunken rampage, claiming he suffers from undiagnosed PTSD
Livesey gave hugs and smiled after the hearing, during which he claimed he suffers from trauma due to his experiences of combat in Afghanistan
At Stockport Magistrates’ Court, Livesey faced up to 12 months in jail after admitting to three charges of assaulting an emergency worker, but was given ten weeks jail suspended for 12 months.
He was seen clutching his chest and laughing hysterically outside court after the hearing.
His lawyer claimed his military background meant any physical confrontation would ‘actively engage his brain in a way that is different to others’.
Earlier Laura Peers, prosecuting, said: ‘On the evening of March 11 last year police received calls reporting a disturbance at a bar in Stockport. They reported that a heavily intoxicated and aggressive male was abusing customers near the bar doors.
‘When the police arrived they found the defendant standing outside of the venue. The officers noticed that he was staggering and clearly unsteady on his feet. He also smelt of alcohol and was shouting and swearing to passers-by.
‘The defendant was asked a number of times to give his details and was generally being obstructive. He continued to shout and swearing at the officers and PC Forsythe attempted to arrest him for being drunk and disorderly.
‘At this point, the defendant grabbed PC Forsythe’s right arm and bent it around his back. The officers then used pepper spray, which sent him to the floor.
‘In reaction to this the defendant bit PC Russell on her hand then bit PC Dorey on the back of her leg, causing bruising. After the defendant was subdued, PC Dorey was later taken to hospital.’
The ex-soldier bit one female officer on the hand and the other on the leg as they and a male colleague stopped him for abusing passers-by outside a pub in Stockport in March last year
Livesey was seen clutching his chest and laughing hysterically outside court after the hearing
PC Russell said in a statement: ‘I felt the defendant bite me, it caused a lot of pain. It felt as though he had bit through what felt like a chunk of my hand.
‘To this day I still feel some discomfort to my hand. I do not believe anybody should act in this sort of way.
‘I honestly think it is horrific the way this man acted. As a police officer I have a duty of care to protect the public and I truly believe that this man did not respect that at all.
‘What the defendant did in this case was completely out of order. It was despicable and horrifying.’
She added: ‘I felt I acted fairly towards him, giving him plenty of chances to comply with requests but what he showed in response was extreme aggression. He needs to have a serious look in the mirror. We all have lives and families to go home to.’
PC Dorey said: ‘Due to this injury I was taken to hospital but COVID meant I was unable to get a complete hepatitis B jab, which left me vulnerable to risk of contagion. I was off from work for a few days because of this.
‘I do not come into work to feel like a victim. I understand that we may face difficulties in this job but this is unacceptable.
‘Even the doctor said that my bite was worse than any other bite that I could have had.
‘As a result I am incredibly sore and unable to bend my knee properly. I cannot wear clothing comfortably.’
In mitigation, defence lawyer Estelle Parkhurst pointed to Livesey’s military past and the difficulty of readjusting to life as a veteran
Livesey has nine convictions for 20 offences, including an assault in 2018 for which he received another community order.
In mitigation, defence lawyer Estelle Parkhurst pointed to Livesey’s military past and the difficulty of readjusting to life as a veteran.
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‘So many of our veterans are not supported properly. Mr Livesey himself joined the army at 16 and completed five years of active service, including one tour of Afghanistan,’ she said.
‘This experience has undoubtedly left him with much emotional trauma and he is someone that does not respond well to being detained by police officers.
‘He experiences symptoms of PTSD but has had no official diagnosis for PTSD as that requires the individual to spend extended time with mental health professionals.
‘Readjusting to life after the army is not an easy feed but one thing he has told me is that every day he just keeps continuing. He fights to continue.
‘He doesn’t justify what took place that evening but these are his recollections. He had been out with friends drinking.’
Ms Parkhurst added: ‘An allegation had been made inside the pub and police wanted to speak with him outside. He denied that he had committed the offence and wanted to walk away from the incident and be done with it but the police did not let him.
‘Pepper spray was used and his reaction to that physical force to detain him was unlawful. He could not see and he panicked.
‘Any physical confrontation will actively engage their brain in a way that is different to others. Soldiers like him turn to fighting at all costs and this is what happened that evening. He is genuinely remorseful. ‘
Livesey was also ordered to complete 15 rehabilitation activity days and 150 hours unpaid work.
As compensation, he was ordered to pay £300 to PC Dorey, £150 to PC Russell and £100 to PC Forsyth. He must also pay £300 in court costs plus the £128 statutory surcharge.
JP Marilyn Gibson told him: ‘These were appalling assaults on all three officers.’
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