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Telford handyman who assaulted partner and pushed over pensioner avoids jail

Oswestry | News | Published:

A handyman who assaulted his partner during a row before pushing over her 83-year-old neighbour who had tried to intervene, has avoided going to prison.

Robert Ayres had been in an on-off relationship with his partner for nine years, but had not seen her for six weeks prior to last month's incident.

He had called round to visit but was drunk when he arrived and they argued, Telford Magistrates Court heard.

Abigail Hall, prosecuting, said the 46-year-old, of Stone Crescent, Arleston, Telford had alcohol issues which at the root of their problems.

She said Ayres claimed he had not been drinking, but she could tell he was drunk when he arrived at her address in Oswestry at about 8pm on August 27.

Miss Hall said: "She says, 'I could tell from his manner that he was drunk. He was loud and his language was disgusting'. She told him she didn't want him there and asked him to leave and he carried on being abusive. She was sitting on the chair and he grabbed her left arm pulling her down to the floor."

Miss Hall told the court that Ayres grabbed the injured party's hair and pushed his fist in her face. He kicked a door at the property with his steel toe cap boot, causing it to crack then kicked her causing bruising and soreness.

She said the woman's elderly neighbour came out of his house when he overheard the commotion and told Ayres to "go away".

Miss Hall said: "The defendant put out his two hands and pushed him causing him to fall over backwards on to the floor. His partner said she was horrified and embarrassed.

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"She told Ayres that he had assaulted both of them and she was calling the police. A passing witness who was walking his dog advised her that he saw what happened and he had already telephoned the police. Officers arrived and the defendant was arrested as he was walking away."

She added that Ayres, who has previous convictions mainly for drink-related offences, told the officers he could not remember much about his actions.

Ayres, who represented himself, pleaded guilty to two charges of assault by beating and another of criminal damage at a previous hearing.

For assault he was sentenced to 15 weeks jail, for criminal damage four weeks jail to run concurrently and suspended for two years.

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He was ordered to carry out 80 hours unpaid work, a 20-hour probation course, he must pay a total of £350 compensation, £115 victims' surcharge, £135 costs. An unspecified restraining order was also made.

Chairman of the bench Mr Geoffrey Bailey told Ayres: "We are very concerned about the nastiness involved in assaulting a 83-year-old man.

"To claim that you can't remember is no excuse. To be pushed over by someone half his age must have been upsetting. The same goes for assaulting the lady. We think these offences are so serious that we did look at the option of a period in custody. "

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