Woman tasered after brandishing kitchen knife at police in Newcastle home

A woman who had to be tasered when she brandished a kitchen knife at police inside her Newcastle home has avoided jail.

Shahida Hussain was under “extreme stress” having only recently moved to the UK from abroad when officers were called to a disturbance at the house she shares with her husband, in Fenham.

After initially refusing to let the constables in, the 47-year-old ran to he kitchen and pulled a knife from a drawer, a court heard.

Hussain then brandished the weapon at officers and only dropped it after they were forced to deploy a taser.

Now, Hussain, of Wingrove Gardens, in Fenham, has been fined and given a 12-month community order after she pleaded guilty to assaulting an emergency worker during a hearing at North Tyneside Magistrates’ Court.

Ben Woodward, prosecuting, said police attended Hussain’s address on March 22 – the day before the national coronavirus lockdown – after reports of a disturbance.

Mr Woodward continued: “The defendant initially prevented them from entering. They eventually forced entry and the defendant went into he kitchen and grabbed a knife from a drawer.

“The defendant brandished it at the officers and only put it down after being tasered by an officer.”

The court heard that Hussain, who has no previous convictions, had been struggling with “extreme stress” because of her recent move to the UK.

Mark Richardson, mitigating, said: “She had recently moved to the UK to start a new life. Simply moving house is supposed to be one of the most stressful experiences someone can go through in their life.

“She not only moved country but moved continent to a country where she does not speak the language.

“She had a very difficult domestic situation – her husband is significantly older and has health problems – and this incident was the straw that broke the camel’s back.

“The involvement of police was frightening and alien to her and she displayed an extreme overreaction and she’s very ashamed of her actions.”

As well as the community order, Hussain was fined £100 and ordered to pay £85 costs and a £95 victim surcharge.

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Newcastle bar Leila Lily’s wins international award for its luxury interior design

A Newcastle bar has won an international award less than a year since its opening.

Leila Lily’s in Grey Street impressed judges at the FESPA awards with its interior design and the likes of vibrant wallpapers – and the winning work was created by designer Beth Travers, originally from Sunderland.

The city centre restaurant-bar, which opened last September to reveal its floral new look, beat worldwide competition to win a new category at the international awards ceremony called printeriors, which celebrates innovative use of printed materials and design in interiors.

The work by Beth, who now runs her company, BOBO 1325, from Manchester, secured first place over entrants from as far afield as India and Italy.

FESPA – now known as the acronymn, which originally stood for Federation of European Screen Printers Association – is a global group representing the screenprinting and digital printing industry.

Its award judges described Beth’s work as “a stunning example which demonstrated creative use of digital technologies to create luxury interior decoration”.

Beth Travers
Beth Travers

Beth said: “The awards were originally supposed to be held in Madrid and I had tickets to go and then because of Covid-19 it had be held remotely.

“But the fact that I managed to win made up for the fact we had to ‘attend’ a virtual ceremony.”

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She added: “I am so proud of the award, particularly because I am originally from the North East so it’s really special that I won it for my work on a project from there.

“Leila Lily’s is an incredible venue and it was amazing to be a part of it.”

Atul Malhotra, operations director of The Malhotra Group PLC which owns Leila Lily’s and who came up with the original concept for the venue he names after his daughter, said: “We know that Leila Lily’s is something special and it’s fantastic that this has been recognised internationally.”

He said that Beth “did a fantastic job” and is now currently working again with the company at both The Three Mile Inn in Gosforth and on refurbishment plans for Osborne’s bar in Jesmond.

At a time the hospitality industry is struggling to recover from the effects of the pandemic, the award is another piece of good news for Leila Lily’s which was awarded an AA rosette for its food just before lockdown.

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