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Newmarket woman accused of coughing at police officer while claiming to have coronavirus to stand trial




A Newmarket woman will stand trial after she denied trying to steal a rucksack and coughing in the face of a police officer while claiming to have coronavirus.

At Ipswich Crown Court today Saskia Francis, of New Cheveley Road, pleaded not guilty to attempting to steal a bag from Paula Ailenei.

It is alleged she tried to snatch the rucksack from the teenager in The Avenue on May 28. It is claimed after a brief struggle, during which she fell to the floor, the 19 year old managed to keep the bag and escape.

Ipswich Crown Court, Russell Road
Ipswich Crown Court, Russell Road

During the 17 minute hearing the 39 year old, appearing via video link, also denied assaulting a police officer.

She is accused of coughing in the face of Will Pardoe, as she claimed she had coronavirus when he tried to arrest her in Fred Archer Way later the same day.

Lynne Shirley, defence, and Andrew Herd, prosecuting, said the trial was expected to last between two and four days.

Judge David Pugh told Francis the trial would begin in October.


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