Man held for assault in cells after conviction for kicking police officer

Matthew Eves was being held at Bury St Edmunds police investigation centre. Picture: ARCHANT

Matthew Eves was being held at Bury St Edmunds police investigation centre. Picture: ARCHANT - Credit: Archant

A Suffolk man was arrested on suspicion of attacking a custody sergeant as he was led to a cell following his conviction for an assault on police 33 hours earlier.

Matthew Eves had laughed and applauded as his threats to burn down a police station and kill an officer were repeated in court.

The 27-year-old shook a copy of the bible during his magistrates’ court hearing in Ipswich.

Appearing on video from Bury St Edmunds police investigation centre on Friday, he climbed on a table as prosecutors recounted the night he kicked an officer after swinging a metal bar in the street and using it to flog a traffic light.

Eves, from Eye, admitted the assault and behaving in a manner likely to cause fear in the early hours of Thursday. He also confessed to stealing a drill bit from Eye Town Hall during restoration work – a charge he was due to face later this month.

Prosecutor Lesla Small said Eves was seen ringing doorbells and carrying a metal bar in Bury St Edmunds just before 12.10am.

An hour later, he was reported for shouting, walking in the road and waving the bar around.

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Police arrived to find Eves glaring, in a combative stance, a foot from the metal bar.

When handcuffed, he argued police were being aggressive and demanded they lit the cigarette in his mouth. When denied, he spat it out and shoved a male officer, who pushed back and retreated, but returned when Eves directed his aggression at female officers.

He was restrained after kicking the officer, who he threatened to kill en route to the station, which he vowed to burn down.

The incident happened a day after Eves was fined for stealing two cans of beer from The Beerhouse in Tayfen Road.

Jeremy Kendall, defending Eves, said his client was a vulnerable man who had served jail time after being exploited by a gang trading Class A drugs in the town.

He said Eves had wandered the streets after being released from custody for stealing beer, found the bar in a skip and hit a traffic light, but had not intended to use it on anyone. He said the assault was reckless but not intentional.

Eves interrupted to tell District Judge Martin Steen that he was not vulnerable, adding: “Police carry weapons, so I have the right to carry my own for protection.”

Eves was remanded in custody for the probation service to prepare pre-sentence reports. He was rearrested at 10.25am on suspicion of assaulting an officer.