A DRUG-dealing law student who punched a police officer in the face with a set of car keys between his knuckles has been jailed.

Michael Williams of Victoria Rise, London, had already admitted two counts of possession with intent to supply heroin and crack cocaine, possession of cannabis and assault occasioning actual bodily harm.

Oxford Crown Court heard at his sentencing on Tuesday how the 39-year old was stopped by the police on June 25 while parked in an Audi RS3 at Southfield Park in East Oxford.

Officers were acting on suspicion of drug dealing in the area and when they approached Williams, the court heard, he quickly became aggressive and began shouting.

As PC Proust tried to arrest him, Williams punched him several times with the keys to the car jutting out from his clenched fist.

Williams then tried to flee before lobbing a package into a wooded area while chased by officers.

He was only subdued, the court heard, after officers sprayed him with Captor spray.

PC Proust then got out his baton to corner him while back-up officers arrived.

When police later retrieved the package they discovered a quantity of class A drugs, which are yet to be fully analysed, the court heard.

In mitigation Peter Du Feu said that his client, a law student at Oxford Brooke, had fallen into drug dealing after getting involved in gangs at his London estate.

He said that he had only agreed to deal the drugs on that occasion to help a friend who had incurred a debt with other dealers after arrest.

Sentencing, Judge Zoe Smith said of the incident: “You reacted violently. You grabbed hold of [the officer] and you went on to have a tussle with him.

“This is a very serious offence aggravated very much by the fact that you were trying to escape from a police officer doing his duty.”

He was jailed for a total of 42 months, made up of 32 months concurrent for each drugs charge and 10 months consecutive for the assault.