David Lewis

Ipswich: Man spared jail over abusive calls to police

Friday, February 8, 2013
12.21 PM

A MAN who plagued police with more than 50 phone calls in just over three months has been spared a prison sentence.

David Lewis, of London Road, Ipswich, made 57 calls to Suffolk Constabulary between August 24 and December 1 last year.

Lewis was given a community order with six months supervision when he appeared for his sentencing before South East Suffolk Magistrates Court.

The court had previously heard the 40-year-old, who suffers from mental illness and depression, had “insulted” officers with “rude and abusive” language.

In addition to his community order Lewis was told he must pay prosecution costs of £85 and £60 to the victims’ fund.

Lewis pleaded guilty to harassing police at an earlier hearing.

At the time the court heard that on October 29 and December 1, Lewis pestered police with ten calls on both days.

Lesla Small, prosecuting, said: “During calls he is rude and abusive to police staff. He deliberately provokes officers, twists their words and insults them. It has caused needless anxiety.”

Lewis was warned by police on November 14 to stop making the “unnecessary” calls before he was arrested on December 16.

Magistrates were told Lewis was drunk during many of the calls and had apologised for those when confronted by police. However, he also said some of the calls were for genuine reasons.

The court heard Lewis has previous convictions for a racially/religiously aggravated public order offence in February 2010 and for being drunk and disorderly in August 2011.

Mark Holt, mitigating, said Lewis, who was also cautioned for arson in 2003, had been calling the police because of problems with a neighbour.

Mr Holt said: “Lewis maintains some of the calls he made were genuine and necessary, but accepts a number of calls should not have been made.

“Some of the calls he made were calling back to apologise.

“There are ongoing issues with his neighbour which I believe the police are investigating – and some of the calls were made about the neighbour.”