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Jail for Market Drayton man in drug debt attacks

By Deborah Hardiman | Market Drayton | Crime | Published:

A man has been jailed for a total of 14 months for twice attacking an acquaintance in Market Drayton over an unpaid debt.

Robert Griffiths

Carl Beech was punched, in St Mary's Street, Market Drayton, on August 20, last year by Robert Griffiths who headbutted him two days later.

Mr Simon Phillips, prosecuting barrister, said a passerby who saw what happened on August 22 reported the second incident to the police who arrested Griffiths.

He said that in his police interview Griffiths, 42, denied the offences and stated that Mr Beech owed him £150 for drugs and that they were arguing over that.

Griffiths, who has been in custody since his arrest, was due to face a jury at Shrewsbury on Wednesday, but changed his pleas to guilty after an alternative assault offence was put to him in relation to the second incident which happened outside a GP surgery in the town.

Mr Kevin Jones, defending, said: "I would ask for maximum credit for this defendant.

Bleeding

"I don't disagree with the way the case has been put. In the first incident the victim has a bleeding mouth, and in the second he has a bloody nose aggravated by the headbutt."

Mr Jones said under the sentencing guidelines for assault, the matters were not the most serious to come before the court and that his client had already spent four-and-a-half months in prison.

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He said Griffiths, of no fixed abode, had tested positive for drugs when he was arrested and when he also drank it affected his behaviour.

The court heard that Griffiths had previous convictions dating to 1994 including five assault matters, dishonesty and was given a two-year jail term in 2016 for burglary and eight weeks in 2018 for shoplifting.

Sentencing Griffiths, Judge Anthony Lowe said: "Each of these assaults in their own way is an unpleasant display of violence."

For the first assault Griffiths was jailed for 11 months, for the second assault three months to be served consecutively, minus time spent on remand. He must serve half before being released on licence.

He was also made subject to a restraining order for three years preventing him from contacting Mr Beech and his father.

Deborah Hardiman

By Deborah Hardiman
@Deborahh_Star

Senior reporter for the Shropshire Star based out of the head office in Ketley. Covering the Telford area.

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