Man jailed for driving over officer’s foot during road rage escape

39-year-old drug addict handed one-year jail term after being found guilty of attacking, and slightly injuring two police officers.

A drug addict who drove over an officer’s foot during a road rage escape has been jailed for 12 months after being found guilty of attacking, and slightly injuring two police officials.

Josef Sharfid, 39, who has no fixed residence, was also found guilty of damaging a police vehicle, and of breaching public peace.

The court dates back to 30 March 2012, when the accused, who at the time had violated bail conditions, was spotted driving his vehicle in St Julian’s by two patrolling officers.

In his testimony, Police Sargeant Paul Cassar told the court that as soon as Sharfid saw the police vehicle, he drove off.

Upon stopping in traffic, police constable Adrian Zahra got out of the vehicle and approached the driver to ask him some questions. Sharfid then sped off, driving over Zahra’s right foot in the process. The injuries were later certified as being slight by a doctor.

A car chase then ensued and the police vehicle managed to block off the accused’s car.

Sharfid however managed to escape after opening his car door onto the police vehicle, slightly damaging the vehicle in the process. The accused then escaped on foot before being apprehended shortly after by Adrian Zahra. The policeman also told the court that the police had to use a taser to calm the man down.

On his part, Sharfid told the court that he drove off because he saw the police running at him with a taser. He also claimed that the police used excessive force on him, and that they were going to kill him with their beating.

In its decree, the court dismissed the claims, and noted that he as an impulse control disorder and a drug problem.

Magistrate Neville Camilleri found the man guilty of attacking and slightly injuring two police officers, of causing €594 in damage to a police vehicle, and of breaching public order. Sharfid was however acquitted of driving negligently, and of disobeying police orders. The court also rejected the prosecution’s plea to revoke Sharfid’s car licence.

Magistrate Camilleri sentenced the man to 12 months behind bars.

Inspector Trevor Micallef prosecuted.