A MAN is to stand trial charged with trying to kill a police officer.

John Dow, 36, is accused of attacking PC Paul Gavan in Mitchell Street, Coatbridge, Lanarkshire last July 26.

The attempted murder charge states the constable was on duty when he was grabbed by the neck and choked causing his breathing to be restricted.

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PC Gavan is said to have fallen unconscious as a result.

Dow then allegedly punched the officer while continuing to choke him.

He faces an earlier charge of acting in an abusive manner aggravated by prejudice to sexual orientation on the same day.

It is claimed Dow swore at PC Gavan, made homophobic remarks and threatened to kill the constable.

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Dow is further accused of attacking PC George Hay by choking him to his injury, assaulting an unknown male and obstructing police.

Lorraine Glancy, defending, pleaded not guilty on Dow's behalf during a short hearing at the High Court in Glasgow.

Prosecutor Euan Cameron later said: "The sole reason for this hearing was to ascertain if a trial can be fixed. We are ready for trial."

Lord Mulholland fixed a trial due to begin in August.