A thug who knocked a police sergeant to the ground with an ‘enormous’ kick to his back has been jailed for 28 months after police identified him using his luminous green shorts.
Daniel Allan, 35, was filmed running up behind Richard Lambert and booting him next to Big Ben during the Black Lives Matter counter-protest in London on 13 June.
Fellow ‘protect the statues’ protesters then leapt on the officer and continued the attack as he tried to stand up.
The father-of-two was arrested after police circulated a video of the bare-chested demonstrator launching a ‘running flying kick’ at Sergeant Lambert while wearing distinctive green shorts.
The electrician from Sunderland admitted violent disorder at Southwark Crown Court.
The court heard that Allan had travelled from his home in Sunderland to attend demonstrations in the capital during which, groups of far-right protesters sought to ‘protect statues’ around Whitehall and Trafalgar Square.
Police had fought running battles with demonstrators throughout the day, the court heard, after being deployed to central London to prevent public disorder.
When a group of officers were walking through demonstrators on Bridge Street, opposite the Shard in Southwark, they were pelted by verbal abuse and projectiles.
Prosecutor Jennifer Gatland said: ‘Suddenly and without provocation Mr Allan kicked out at police sergeant Richard Lambert in his back with his right foot causing him to fall to the ground.
‘This prompted the rest of the group to attack the officers. He was again kicked while picking himself up but that person wasn’t arrested.
‘Officers circled to protect their colleagues and Mr Allan ran back into the crowd, however he had a distinct appearance and footage of the incident was uploaded and it was circulated.
‘Mr Allan was captured after other officers saw the footage and recognised Mr Allan wearing luminous shorts.’
Prosecutor Nicholas Alexander said that Allan, who had consumed eight cans of lager and become angry after being hit by a police baton, had emboldened other protesters to attack officers.
Sergeant Lambert sustained bruising to his back due to the attack but was not seriously injured.
He said, in a statement read to court: ‘I felt an enormous kick to the small of my back, I fell to the floor with immediate pain to the lower back due to the kick.’
District Judge Nicholas Rimmer had told Allan: ‘The seriousness of conduct consists of being part of a wider protest in which missiles were being thrown, you personally kicked out at police sergeant Richard Lambert to his back, that seems to have caused further violence.’
Detective Inspector Neil Gunn said: ‘This was an unprovoked and cowardly attack against one of our officers which we completely condemn. We welcome this sentence and I hope this brings comfort to the officer who was kicked – I know he’ll share my disgust in Allan’s actions.
‘Allan was truly caught redhanded, his assault was not only shared widely on social media, it was also witnessed by a team of officers gathering video evidence.
‘Thanks to the very distinctive colour of his shorts, he was arrested a short while later by City of London Police.
‘Our investigations to trace those responsible for other acts of violence during demonstrations continue. As part of this we have released a number of images of people we want to speak with in connection. I would urge anyone with information on who they are to get in touch.’
Eleanor Fraser, defending, said: ‘Mr Allan was struck by a police officer’s baton, he showed the mark in interview, which was something of a retaliation but he accepts that it was unjustifiable.
‘Upon arrest he had a panic attack and has had a further six panic attacks in custody.’
Allan, who has 51 previous convictions for a total of 111 offences, was sentenced for 28 months in prison but did not have to pay Sgt Lambert compensation.
Sentencing Allan, Judge Sally Cahill QC said that the assault on Sgt Lambert was ‘appalling behaviour’.
‘This was a man who had his back to you and was walking away,’ she said.
‘You might have thought that you were here to protect statues, but that was the last thing you did when you got here.
On Friday, a second man, Alfie Hubbard, 25, from London, entered a not guilty plea to a charge of violent disorder at the same incident on June 13.
Hubbard will be tried on November 23 2020.