A TEENAGER who headbutted a pensioner then stood laughing as his victim fell into a road has been sentenced to 18 months in a young offenders institute after admitting assault occasioning grievous bodily harm.
James Crawford, 18, who was living in a hostel in Claypit Lane, Wrexham, was described as “out of control”, “sick” and “mad” as Warrington Crown Court heard about his attack on retired antiques dealer Alan Corney, 67, who later collapsed at home and died in hospital in February of this year.
Warrington Crown Court heard Crawford, who was drunk, and another youth, were outside Alan and Norma Corney’s home in The Parade, Parkgate, at about 8.30pm on Friday, November 14.
Duncan Bold, prosecuting, said: “The language they were using and their behaviour was described by Mrs Corney as disgusting and she felt intimidated and vulnerable.
“Alan Corney approached them and asked them to keep their language down and took hold of the defendant by his clothing.
“Although causing no real threat the defendant went ‘sick’ at Mr Corney, he went mad, jumped into the air and crashed down on to his face with his head.”
The court then heard how Crawford “jumped around excitedly and laughed” before running away.
Mr Corney, who walked with a limp and had a paralysed arm after two strokes before the attack, suffered a broken cheek bone and developed a blood clot on the brain after being headbutted.
He collapsed at home and died weeks later in hospital after brain surgery which left him in a coma.
Sentencing Crawford to 18 months, less the five months he has already served, judge Stephen Clarke said: “It has an all to familiar ring at what is happening time and time again in our villages, towns and cities.
“People act without any thought about the consequences of what they are doing and show the nearest respect to other human beings.
“Courts can only do so much, the real problems lie in our society which has lost respect for each other.
“You were aware of what you were doing and aware of who you were doing it to, an elderly gentleman old enough to be your grandfather, and I hope you are ashamed.”