A 52-year-old man has been sentenced to 30 months in prison after he was found guilty of a using a dog to attack a police officer.

Michael Izzard, of Cassilis Road, Millwall, was travelling on Sunday, 8 March, 2015 with a pit-bull type dog.

Izzard was heard using racist and inappropriate language towards a member of public whilst he stood on the platform. Izard then instructed the dog to attack the man and also tried to punch him.

The court heard how Izzard was asked to put the dog on a lead by a member of rail staff, who he verbally abused.

Witnesses had heard Izzard and a female arguing and Izzard kicking the dog multiple times while he waited at Shadwell station.

BTP officers were called to the station and upon arrival tried to restrain and arrest Izzard. In doing so the dog became aggressive causing the officers to defend themselves against it. The animal attacked and bit two of the officers and dragged one of them to the floor.

The court heard that the female who had been travelling with Izzard managed to get a harness back on the dog and restrain it.

Izzard was later traced to his home address where he was arrested.

Det Sgt Dan Holmes said: “Izzard’s language and actions were appalling on that Sunday afternoon, which was witnessed by families and children. The events which unfolded clearly terrified people who witnessed it.

“The officers who were there to deal with the situation were unfortunately injured not to mention shaken up by the whole incident. We take animal cruelty extremely seriously, and will not tolerate any type of violence or abuse on the railway network. BTP will take every action to ensure that people who abuse the transport system are dealt with. I hope the sanctions imposed by the judge on Izzard will give him time to think about his actions in prison.”

Izzard was sentenced at Snaresbrook Crown Court on Thursday, for affray, racially aggravated assault and a dog being dangerously out of control in a public place. He was also banned from owning a dog for 10 years.