Ex-soldier at­tacked two men in street

Rossendale Free Press - - Front Page - CHRIS GEE chris.gee@reach­plc.com @RossFreePress

AFORMER soldier has ad­mit­ted threat­en­ing be­hav­iour in Rawten­stall town cen­tre.

James Ha­worth, 29, of Har­g­reaves Drive, pleaded guilty at Burn­ley Mag­is­trates Court to a charge of us­ing threat­en­ing, abu­sive or in­sult­ing words and be­hav­iour af­ter an in­ci­dent in Rawten­stall town cen­tre on the evening of Septem­ber 29 this year.

Pros­e­cut­ing, Andy Robin­son said that a pass­ing po­lice pa­trol saw the de­fen­dant on top of an­other man on the pave­ment while punch­ing him.

Of­fi­cers ap­proached the scene but Ha­worth con­tin­ued to be ag­gres­sive.

Mr Robin­son, said: “He pushed past the of­fi­cers and punched a sec­ond man. The men were not known to him.”

Mr Robin­son said that the two men suf­fered in­juries, one a black eye and the other cuts to his right ear.

The court heard that dur­ing po­lice in­ter­views af­ter his ar­rest Ha­worth was co­op­er­a­tive, ad­mit­ted his be­hav­iour and said ‘I take full re­spon­si­bilty for it’.

Ha­worth, who works as a self-em­ployed road sur­face worker, had pre­vi­ous con­vic­tions for a num­ber of pub­lic or­der of­fences in­clud­ing as­sault in 2015 and as­sault­ing a po­lice of­fi­cer in 2016.

Mr Robin­son said that although the fact that Ha­worth had been seen by the po­lice of­fi­cers punch­ing the two men was not in dis­pute by all par­ties, the charge was one of pub­lic or­der as the men had de­cided not to make a com­plaint.

De­fend­ing, David Law­son said his client had pre­vi­ously been a mem­ber of the Armed Ser­vices, serv­ing a ‘lengthy stint’ in Afghanistan where he had sus­tained ‘life threat­en­ing in­juries in com­bat’.

He said: “Mr Ha­worth needed fa­cial re­con­struc­tion and surgery to re­move half his bowel. “Af­ter re­turn­ing, as is not un­com­mon in these cases, he sought re­lease in al­co­hol and by his own ad­mis­sion this has led to the pub­lic or­der of­fences.”

Mr Law­son said that his client had been co-op­er­a­tive with pro­ba­tion ser­vices, at­tend­ing all his ap­point­ments af­ter pre­vi­ous ap­pear­ances in court but ‘the help there did not go far enough’.

He said a di­ag­no­sis of Post Trau­matic Stress Dis­or­der had been ar­rived at and in re­cent months he had made con­tact with a com­bat vet­er­ans’ group who were as­sist­ing him with care and sup­port.

Mag­is­trates sen­tenced Ha­worth to a four-week cur­few be­tween 8pm and 5am and or­dered him to pay costs of £170.

James Ha­worth

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