1. ITV Report

Man who dragged child in headlock jailed for two years

Andrew Bell, 34, of Fisher Street, Workington Photo: Cumbria Police

A man who held a five-year-old child in a headlock and dragged her four meters down the street whilst under the influence of drugs has been sentenced to two years in prison.

34-year-old Andrew Bell of Fisher Street, Workington, admitted charges of common assault, child abduction and a public order offence at Carlisle Crown Court today, Friday 23 February.

It happened in Falcon Place, Workington, on 23 January 2018.

Bell approached a parked car where a parent was putting her child into a child seat.

He opened the door and attempted to get into the car, beside the child, when the mother of a second child pulled him away.

He then hit the mother in the face before grabbing hold of her child.

Bell grabbed the child in what the mother described as a headlock and dragged her four metres by her coat and backpack.

The mother was not injured.

He let go of the child and was wrestled to the ground by a man who held him until the police arrived.

Bell told officers he had taken a cocktail of drugs at a friend's home nearby.

He left the house to get help, but couldn't explain his actions.

He blamed the drugs, saying it was “all a blank” and that he was having an “out of body experience” but also told officers he remembered hitting the mother of the girl.

He said he felt “disgusted” and insisted he would “never hurt a kid”.

He concluded the interview by apologising.

Detective Sergeant Jim Rooney of Workington CID said:

Bell’s actions that day caused terror for a mother, her little girl and all those who witnessed what he had done, including those who came to the mother and daughter’s aid.

Whilst Bell blames the drugs, it was his decision to take them and he remains responsible for his actions.

His experience highlights the fact that anyone who takes illegal substances has no way of knowing for sure what they contain, in what concentration or what impact they will have on an individual."

– Jim Rooney, Detective Sergeant, Workington CID