A ROBBER spat at a police sergeant and laughed as he told the officer 'I’ve got Aids'.

Magistrates jailed Jamie Howard for seven days for the assault. It is to be served alongside the seven-and-a-half year sentence he is serving for robbing a drug dealer.

The Swindon court heard the 25-year-old had been picked up on a warrant for the Manchester incident in July last year.

Prosecutor Michelle Hewitt said Howard was being held at Gablecross police station. “During his detention he had been threatening and aggressive and Sgt Adam Whyte was told the defendant was in the exercise yard.

“The defendant was described as becoming animated, squaring up, looking as though he was on the cusp of becoming violent.

“The officer placed his hand on the defendant’s shoulder. The defendant told the officer to keep his hands off and continued to be abusive towards him.”

Howard used a four-letter slur to insult the police sergeant. “He was told he was being taken to Manchester and he was resisting that idea both verbally and physically.”

Ms Hewitt said he spat at Sgt Whyte: “The defendant then said ‘yes, I’ve got Aids, ha, ha, ha’.”

The officer had to go to hospital for a check-up, while Howard was taken to the floor and given a spit hood.

Appearing before Swindon Magistrates’ Court via video link from HMP Manchester, Howard pleaded guilty to assaulting an emergency worker.

Richard Williams, defending, said his client was facing serious charges in the northern city and was afraid of what might happen to him were he taken back there.

He had told Sgt Whyte: “They will kill me.”

The solicitor said Howard suffered from poor mental health, including a personality disorder, and had not been taking his correct medication at the time of the assault.

He was remorseful. “Mr Howard acknowledges he was very wrong. He has told me the officer was only doing his job and in his own way has communicated his regret, shame and remorse. If things were different I dare say Mr Howard would wish to apologise to the officer.”

Magistrates sentenced Howard to seven days imprisonment and ordered he pay £100 compensation.

As he was taken down, the defendant expressed his enthusiasm for paying back the officer: “As soon as I’m released and I’ve got a job again I’ll pay it. Thank you very much, your honour.”