Revolting inmate threw human filth over teacher and spat at guard

A prison inmate who threw faeces and urine over a teacher’s face in a ‘disgusting’ attack has had his sentence extended.

Ryan Nettle left the victim feeling so filthy that he took three showers and was still scared to hug his family when he got home.

The inmate went on to spit at a prison officer at a time when he was in an isolation cell with Covid 19 symptoms at the height of the pandemic.

Nettle did not have a grudge against the college lecturer, who was teaching a course at Channings Wood jail near Newton Abbot, and carried out the attack to pay off a debt to another prisoner who did.

He waited until the victim was on his own in a classroom and threw a container full of human filth over his shoulder and back, with some of the brown mixture splashing onto his face and glasses.

Ryan Nettle
Ryan Nettle

He spat at a prison officer through the flap in his cell door when he was angry about having a tub of fermenting hooch removed from his cell on a Covid landing at Channings Wood.

Nettle, aged 22, of Eglos Road, Shortlanesend, near Truro, admitted administering a noxious substance and assaulting an emergency worker.

He was jailed for 17 months by Judge David Evans at Exeter Crown Court. He had been due to be released this week from a three year sentence for burglary passed at Truro last year.

The judge told him: ”The learning facilitator was at the prison to enable inmates to access education. Importantly, he describes the liquid hitting him on the shoulder and back and a small amount hitting his face and going over his face and glasses.

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“It doesn’t take any more than that to understand how he must have felt. He had to take three showers that day and did not want to hug his family because he was concerned about illness and disease.

“On April 28, at the height of pandemic, while still at Channings Wood, you were in a cell and displaying symptoms of Covid. You were there precisely because you were symptomatic.

“An officer confiscated fermenting liquid and you began damaging the cell in a fit of angry retaliation. The custody manager went to try to calm you down and your response was repugnant.

“There was an entirely foreseeable fear of infection caused by spit from a symptomatic prisoner.”

Miss Katie Churcher, prosecuting, said the attack on the teacher, who had come into the prison from outside to take classes, happened on February 19, and the spitting incident two months later.

The teacher made an impact statement which said: “I feel devastated that someone would do this to me. It was disgusting and a felt the smell was still on me even after I had taken three showers.”

The victim of the spitting attack said he feared he had been infected with Covid until test results came back negative.

Mr Herc Ashworth, defending, said Nettle was bullied into carrying out the first attack by another prisoner to whom he owed money and who was threatening him with violence.

He apologised immediately and is very sorry for what he did. He also apologised for the spitting, which happened at a time when he was under a lot of extra strain because of the virus stopped family visits and left inmates locked up for almost the entire day.

Devon Live