Drug dealer jailed after officers inhaled cocaine thrown at them during raid

Police officers were left feeling the effects of the Class A drug after Michael Beaton threw the powder at them.

Drug dealer Michael Beaton jailed after hurling cocaine at police officers during raid in Aberdeen iStock

A drug dealer who hurled cocaine at police during a raid leaving officers feeling effects from the Class A drug has been jailed for almost six years.

Michael Beaton ran towards detectives after entry was forced to a house in Aberdeen and threw a block of white powder, containing the drug, at them.

DC Daniel Vardy was hit in the face with the cocaine and inhaled powder through his nose and mouth. Three of his colleagues also ingested powder.

Beaton then punched the detective constable on the head as the officers moved in to break up a cocaine and heroin dealing operation that was also producing highly addictive crack cocaine.

A judge at the High Court in Edinburgh told Beaton that such attacks on police would not be tolerated.

Lord Ericht said: “You have a record of previous convictions stretching back to 2013.”

The judge pointed out it included convictions for dealing in Class  A drugs and told him that because of his record he was subject to a minimum jail term of seven years.

Lord Ericht told him that would be reduced following his early guilty pleas to five years and 219 days’ imprisonment for drug offences and ordered he serve a further four months for police assault.

Beaton, 27, and a co-accused Dylan Dunlop, also 27, earlier admitted being concerned in the supply of cocaine and heroin between April 5 and June 19 last year.

Beaton also pled guilty to assaulting DC Vardy, who was then in the execution of his duty, by punching him on the head on June 19.

He further pled guilty to culpably and recklessly throwing a quantity of powder containing cocaine at police officers which struck DC Vardy and caused him and DC Mark Rennie, DC Jordan Blyth and DS John Pirie to ingest it.

Dunlop was jailed for 40 months for his role in the drug trafficking operation.

The court heard that police recovered drugs sold through the dealing operation before staging the raid on the property at Waulkmill Crescent, in Aberdeen, during which a haul of heroin and cocaine worth more than £88,000 on the streets was seized.

Advocate depute Colin Edward said police armed with a search warrant forced entry to the house. The prosecutor said: “As they entered the accused Michael Beaton ran towards them and threw a block of compressed powder containing cocaine.”

“The block hit DC Daniel Vardy in the face, causing the powder to go into the air and on the officers and their clothing. Officers ingested some of the powder whilst it was in the air,” he said.

The detective took hold of Beaton’s arm but was attacked and punched. DC Vardy noticed that his lips, tongue and throat were tingly and started to go numb. He was coughing and tried to wash as much of the white powder as possible from his mouth with water.

The court heard that during the search of the premises full and empty bottles of ammonia were found along with a pan containing the chemical that was in the process of being heated

Defence counsel Jonathan Crowe, for Beaton, said he has expressed remorse and feels bad for the assault on the police officer.

Kenneth Cloggie, for Dunlop, said: “He should be smart enough to take the help that is available to him during his first custodial sentence.”

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