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Man sentenced for assaulting Professor Chris Whitty

|News, Violent crime

A man who assaulted the Government’s Chief Medical Officer as he walked through a central London park has been convicted and sentenced.

Lewis Hughes, 24, from Romford admitted one count of assault by beating when he appeared at Westminster Magistrates’ Court today (Friday, 30 July 2020). He was sentenced to eight weeks imprisonment suspended for two years and ordered to pay £100 in compensation.

The assault related to Hughes forcibly placing his arm around Professor Chris Whitty and putting him into a headlock as he tried to make his way through St James’s Park in Westminster at around 7.20pm on Sunday, 27 June this year.

Professor Whitty, who was on his way to a meeting with the Prime Minister, did not receive any injuries.

Kalsoom Shah, from the CPS, said: “This was a completely unacceptable act of targeting and assaulting Professor Chris Whitty.

“Lewis Hughes showed little regard for him or relevant social distancing rules when he accosted the Government’s Chief Medical Officer in the street. His behaviour was both shocking and disgraceful.

“Like everyone else, public figures should be free to go about their day to day work without fear of being targeted and assaulted. The CPS will always work with the police to bring to justice those who break the law in this way.”

Notes to editors

  • Kalsoom Shah is a Senior Crown Prosecutor within the Magistrates’ Court unit in CPS London South
  • A second defendant Jonathan Chew, 24, of no fixed address, is due to face trial on 23 November 2021 at Westminster Magistrates’ Court in relation to the same incident. He is charged with one count of assault by beating and one count of obstructing police.

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