A drink and drug-fuelled man who spat at hospital staff at Bradford Royal Infirmary after saying he had Covid-19 has been jailed for 12 months.

Mohammed Jama had downed a litre of vodka and smoked cannabis when he carried out the “appalling” assaults in a cubicle at the hospital, Bradford Crown Court heard today.

Jama, 40, of no fixed address, had already racked up 81 convictions for 112 offences when he was arrested on suspicion of shoplifting on August 30.

Prosecutor Adam Walker said he repeatedly spat in his police cell and told officers he had overdosed on heroin.

He urinated in the police van on the way to BRI and told the Senior Hospital Sister who met him on arrival: “I’ve got Covid 19; I’m going to start spitting.”

He spat repeatedly on the floor in the accident and emergency department although he was told there were children present, Mr Walker said.

He kicked out at police officers taking him to a cubicle and was fitted with a spit hood and leg restraints.

He then spat at the Senior Hospital Sister, who managed to dodge the spittle, and called her a “racist white ****.”

When another member of the accident and emergency team, came to help, Jama bit him on the finger, although his teeth did not penetrate the skin.

A doctor who attended to assist with Jama was also spat at. He managed to avoid most of the saliva but some went on his scrubs uniform.

Jama then refused to leave his cell to be interviewed by the police.

He pleaded guilty to three offences of assault on an emergency worker and two offences of criminal damage.

He was remanded in custody and sentenced on a video link to Leeds Prison.

He had 36 convictions for theft-related matters, 14 for public disorder and eight for offences against the person. His other convictions included possession of a Class A drug and assaulting a police officer.

Jama’s barrister, Paul Canfield, said he had mental health problems. He did not remember what he did at the hospital after drinking a litre of vodka and taking cannabis.

Mr Canfield conceded that Jama’s behaviour was inexcusable.

His offending had slowed down in recent years and he would lose his Home Office accommodation in Bradford if he was jailed.

Judge Andrew Hatton said he should have thought of that before downing the vodka and committing the offences.

It was “appalling” behaviour at a time when NHS staff were under additional strain treating patients in the pandemic.