Robber attacked man outside Aldi store in Beeston then said 'I wish you could catch Covid and die' as he spat in police officer's face
A violent robber spat in a police officer's face as he was arrested for beating up a man and taking his mobile phone outside an Aldi store in Leeds.
Louis Watson was locked up for four years by a judge who described his offending as "appalling".
Leeds Crown Court heard Watson targeted the victim as he was leaving the Aldi store on Tunstall Road, Beeston, at 8.30pm on March 11 this year.
Watson knows the victim through his parents and asked him for a cigarette.
The man said he did not have one and Watson demanded to search him.
As he was searching through his pockets he found the man's mobile phone worth £900.
Watson said: "I want it now. I have got a shiv and I will use it."
Watson punched him several more times before taking the phone and leaving.
The incident was reported to police and officers went to Watson's home to arrest him later that day.
He became abusive and threatening towards one of the officers as he was being transported to custody.
Watson said: "I wish you would catch Covid and die".
He then spat at the same officer a second time and it landed on his forehead and in his eyes.
Watson, of Linden Road, Beeston, pleaded guilty to robbery and assaulting an emergency worker.
He has convictions for robbery on three previous occasions.
He said: "He is a man known not only to him but to his family.
"After the offence (the victim) went to see his mother and father to ask for the phone back and they handed it to him."
Mr Reed said Watson accepted he must go to prison.
Judge Andrew Stubbs QC said: "You behaved in an appalling way. I accept that you are sorry.
"The offending is made worse by your previous convictions."