Jail for groom who hit 2 brides­maids

Macclesfield Express - - BEFORE THE BENCH - JOHN SCHEER­HOUT

AGROOM has been jailed af­ter punch­ing TWO brides­maids dur­ing a booze­fu­elled wed­ding from hell.

John Camp­bell, 27, ad­mit­ted he ‘flipped’ while high on booze and co­caine, punch­ing Rachel Walsh, 23, and then mother-of-two Sa­man­tha De­war, 26.

His new bride Ni­cola, 26, wear­ing a white wed­ding dress with 6ft train, watched her best friend Sa­man­tha be­ing punched to the ground as her big day turned vi­o­lent in the car park of the Ma­sonic Hall in Mac­cles­field.

Jail­ing Camp­bell for 12 months, Judge Roger Dut­ton said Camp­bell had punched Sa­man­tha with ‘some fe­roc­ity’ as it smashed her cheek­bone.

Pros­e­cu­tor Jayne Mor­ris told Ch­ester Crown Court how the Septem­ber 12 drink-fu­elled wed­ding re­cep­tion turned sour at around 1am in the car park. Miss De­war went out of the front en­trance of the hall when she heard shout­ing and an­other brides­maid, Rachel Walsh, ‘up­set and cry­ing’ af­ter she had been punched by Camp­bell, who ‘ looked an­gry and had his face screwed up’, the court heard.

Ms Walsh vom­ited and a male wed­ding guest tried to calm Camp­bell, an ap­pren­tice prin­ter, in vain.

Pros­e­cu­tor Ms Mor­ris told the court: “Even­tu­ally the de­fen­dant was es­corted away by an­other male. Miss De­war then ap­proached the de­fen­dant and asked what had been go­ing on. He then turned to face her and with­out warn­ing punched her to the left side of her face and as a re­sult of the blow she fell back­wards.

“The next thing that she re­calls is her be­ing on her back with her friend over her.” Miss De­war who was also drunk, the court heard, was sick in the car park and was later taken to Mac­cles­field Hos­pi­tal be­fore be­ing trans­ferred to Wythen­shawe Hos­pi­tal.

She was x-rayed and had a CT scan which re­vealed a frac­ture to her left cheek­bone.

Sur­geons op­er­ated and in­serted a metal place in­side her face, the court heard. In a vic­tim im­pact state­ment read out to the court, Miss De­war said she still felt numb­ness in her face four months af­ter the at­tack.

She said: “I have been ex­tremely anx­ious and my sleep has been af­fected. I have trou­ble sleep­ing and when I do fall asleep I have bad dreams and wake up cry­ing.”

The at­tack left her wor­ried about ‘bump­ing into’ Camp­bell and fear­ful about peo­ple see­ing her fa­cial in­jury.

She said she was ‘no longer friends’ with the bride who she had known since they were at Tyther­ing­ton High School to­gether.

“I’m up­set and sad hav­ing lost my re­la­tion­ship with her,” she said.

The court heard that the other brides­maid, Miss Walsh, had not pro­vided po­lice with a state­ment about the at­tack on her.

When Camp­bell was ar­rested, he ad­mit­ted he had ‘a lot to drink’ and had snorted co­caine, the court was told.

He told of­fi­cers he had been hav­ing an ar­gu­ment with his new wife about driv­ing a car and that he ‘flipped’. He ad­mit­ted he was an­noyed that Miss De­war was ‘get­ting in­volved’ and that he was ‘ashamed of him­self’.

CCTV played in court showed Camp­bell punch­ing Miss De­war to the floor and his new bride run­ning over. It also showed the bride and groom ar­gu­ing mo­ments be­fore. The court heard Camp­bell had four pre­vi­ous con­vic­tions for 10 of­fences, three for vi­o­lence aimed at his ex-part­ner.

David Mor­ton, de­fend­ing, handed a let­ter to the judge which ex­pressed ‘heart­felt re­gret’ for the de­fen­dant’s ac­tions.

“He recog­nised that al­co­hol and him don’t mix and would not mix in the fu­ture. This was his wed­ding night and par­tic­u­larly em­bar­rass­ing and hugely re­gret­table not just be­cause of his pred­ica- ment but also the un­in­tended in­jury which he didn’t re­alise was so se­ri­ous.”

Camp­bell, of Queens Av­enue in Mac­cles­field, was jailed for 12 months af­ter he ad­mit­ted GBH.

Judge Roger Dut­ton told him: “You pleaded guilty to caus­ing se­ri­ous in­jury to this lady in a crim­i­nal as­sault. This was your wed­ding day.” Camp­bell nod­ded at the judge as he was jailed be­fore be­ing taken down by the dock of­fi­cers to be­gin his sen­tence as mem­bers of his fam­ily watched from the pub­lic gallery.

●● Sa­man­tha De­war re­ceived a black eye and a smashed cheek­bone in the at­tack

●● John Camp­bell

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