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Market Drayton man ‘blinded in ammonia attack’

By Aimee Jones | Market Drayton | Crime | Published:

A man lost his sight after being attacked in Market Drayton and sprayed in the face with ammonia, a court has heard.

Samuel Butter, 30, denies causing Carl Owen grievous bodily harm with intent during the incident at about 3.30pm on January 11 this year in Market Drayton.

Mr Owen told the jury at Shrewsbury Crown Court yesterday that he has since regained sight in his left eye but is blind in the right eye.

He was allegedly attacked by Butter, of Rutland in Shrewsbury, in a flat in Shropshire Street.

The pair knew each other through a mutual friend, Chris Barber, who lived in the same block of flats as Mr Owen.

Sati Ruck, prosecuting, said Mr Owen went out into Market Drayton town centre on January 11 to carry out some chores.

He saw Butter and gave him about £45 to get some brandy and cigarettes while he continued shopping, and told him to meet back at Mr Barber's flat.

Mr Ruck told the court that when he returned, Butter denied all knowledge and sprayed Mr Owen in the eyes with ammonia and then hit him over the back of the head with an object.

Pain

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Giving evidence, Mr Owen said: "I went round to Chris Barber's flat, knocked on the door and was let in by Sam. He started walking up the stairs so I started to follow him.

"I asked him if he had got the brandy and fags, and he turned around and said he didn't know what I was on about. I turned around and he dashed me in the eyes with ammonia. I know it was ammonia because I know what it smells like as I have used it before.

"My eyes were in that much pain then I was hit in the head with an object. I had to have five stitches in my head for that. I staggered down the stairs and managed to get out of there then my mind goes blank. I must have collapsed."

Mr Owen was found lying on the floor in the courtyard by a neighbour who assisted him and called the emergency services.

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He was taken to Royal Stoke University Hospital for treatment before being referred to an eye specialist.

"I still can't see out of my one eye," he added.

"In 12 months I have to have an operation to have my cornea or retina cut out, or I might have to have a fake eye."

The trial continues.

Aimee Jones

By Aimee Jones
@aimeejones_star

Senior reporter based at the Shropshire Star's Shrewsbury office, covering Shrewsbury, North Shropshire and South Shropshire.

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