x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

Tourist denies punching policeman

Tourist accused of vandalising cars after drinking champagne on a New Year's Even celebration

DUBAI // An American reveller was arrested in the early hours of New Year’s Day after assaulting a policeman and vandalising parked cars, a court heard today.

FA, 27, appeared at the Dubai Court of Misdemeanours to deny charges of assaulting the officer and drinking alcohol after the incident at around 2.30am near the Address Hotel at Dubai Mall.

Three officers were called to the hotel and saw FA, who was visiting the city on holiday, dressed in torn clothes, kicking parked cars and harassing members of the public, according to prosecution records.

An Emirati policeman, AH, 23, told prosecutors that when he and his colleagues arrived on the scene, he saw three men attacking the defendant and trying to prevent him from damaging the vehicles.

The officers captured FA and put him inside the squad car but he began kicking the car seats, according to prosecution records.

AH told prosecutors he climbed into the vehicle in order to get FA to calm down but instead the tourist punched him in the face, hitting his left eye.

FA denied this account of events, saying he was approached by the three officers who asked him to accompany them to the police station.

The American told prosecutors that when he refused, saying he done nothing wrong, the officers tied him up and assaulted him.

A medical report showed that FA sustained multiple injuries in the arms, chest, back, head, neck, behind his ear and on his face.

The report said there were multiple bruises on his body and a bite on his left hand.

FA confessed to drinking five glasses of champagne at the hotel while celebrating the New Year, records show.

Another of the arresting officers, AK, gave evidence in court this morning and said when FA was arrested was committing an indecent act, but he did not elaborate on the nature of the act.

The court asked the witness why he and his colleagues failed to question the men who were assaulting the defendant, but he gave no valid reason and insisted that FA was already injured and assaulted when they arrived on the scene. ?

The court scheduled the next hearing for April 3 to allow the defence lawyer take a copy of the file.

salamir@thenational.ae