A man was arrested after a stand-off lasting longer than an hour in blazing heat and sunshine with police, some of them armed, outside Hove Crown Court today (Thursday 11 August).
Jacob Ross, 27, of Church Road, Hove, was alleged to have had a 5in hunting knife when he turned up to be sentenced at court at about 10.40am.
Officers persuaded Ross, who was wearing metal horns in his head and a face mask, to give himself up peacefully just after 12.15pm.
Ross had been due in court at 10am and Judge Jeremy Gold issued a bench warrant not backed for bail.
The defendant had previously pleaded guilty to having a knife during an affray on Hove Lawns on Saturday 5 June last year.
He also admitted assaulting two police officers – PC Attia Tahir and PC Harry Brookman – and having cannabis.
The judge noted that at a previous hearing, a psychiatric report had been ordered and the court had acceded to a request by Ross that the psychiatrist should be vegan.
Today the court was told that he was also insisting the psychiatrist should be a Hebrew speaker – a request that was refused.
Judge Gold said: “We’re going from the merely unreasonable to the utterly bizarre.
“I have every sympathy for a defendant with mental health difficulties.
“The court has gone to a great deal of trouble to accommodate Mr Ross.”
After Ross was arrested, his barrister Aphra Bruce-Jones said: “The defendant did attend at about 10.40am. He was carrying a large knife so the police were called. He was arrested and taken into custody.”
Court liaison mental health nurse Chris Bath said: “Mr Ross is very unwell. He has been taken into police custody and will be assessed to see whether he needs to be admitted to hospital.”
Judge Gold said: “There must be concerns about his own safety and the safety of the public … and I have to bear in mind the protection of the public.”
The case was adjourned until Thursday 25 August.
The judge said that if Ross was not admitted to hospital, the bench warrant should be executed.
Lansdowne Road reopened to traffic at about 12.20pm.
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