Man jailed for at­tack­ing woman in­side take­away

South Wales Echo - - News - PHILIP DEWEY Re­porter philip.dewey@waleson­

A MAN who had been out cel­e­brat­ing New Year’s Eve smashed a woman’s head on a take­away counter and a threw a bot­tle of wine at the owner af­ter com­plaints were made about his wife jump­ing the queue.

Alex Phipps, 36, was out drink­ing with his part­ner So­raya Maxey at the Claude pub, in Cardiff, while see­ing in the New Year. On the way home, they popped into Chick­oland on Al­bany Road just af­ter 1am.

A sen­tenc­ing hear­ing at Cardiff Crown Court yes­ter­day heard the de­fen­dant be­came ag­gres­sive af­ter Ms Maxey be­came in­volved in an ar­gu­ment with So­phie John and Re­becca Woods, who ac­cused her of push­ing in the queue.

Fa­ther-of-three Phipps pro­ceeded to grab Ms John’s head and bring it down upon the counter with force, be­fore throw­ing a bot­tle of wine he had smug­gled out of the pub at the take­away owner Ab­d­ulekrim Yahiaoui.

The bot­tle bounced off Mr Yahiaoui’s head and smashed on the floor, with frag­ments of glass fly­ing into Ms Wood’s face and in­jur­ing her eye.

Phipps was then re­strained by cus­tomers but man­aged to es­cape be­fore re­turn­ing and try­ing to re-en­ter the shop. He was stopped by an­other staff mem­ber Al Tk­bale Ab­dul­baset, who sus­tained in­juries to his wrist af­ter Phipps con­tin­ued to shout and act agres­sively.

Po­lice were called and Phipps was ar­rested and put in the back of a po­lice ve­hi­cle.

The court heard that af­ter of­fi­cers tried to re­strain his wife, who was also act­ing ag­gres­sively, Phipps kicked out at the win­dow of the po­lice ve­hi­cle and smashed it.

When he was ap­proached by an of­fi­cer, he swore at the of­fi­cer and kicked him in the stom­ach.

De­scrib­ing the in­ci­dent, pros­e­cu­tor Steven Donoghue said: “The de­fen­dant be­came aware of the ar­gu­ment be­tween his wife and the women and took of­fence to it.

“He ini­tially ar­gued with So­phie John say­ing ‘don’t you dare speak to my wife like that’ but then grabbed her head and pushed it so it col­lided with the counter. Later on Ms John said she was dizzy and found it dif­fi­cult to re­call what had hap­pened.

“Hav­ing seen what hap­pened Mr Yahiaoui re­mon­strated with the de­fen­dant, telling him to stop.

“The de­fen­dant ap­peared to have lost his tem­per and shouted some­thing back to the owner.

“He pro­duced the bot­tle and threw it at the owner. The bot­tle hit the right eye area and did not break but bounced off him.

“It smashed on the floor and the shards hit Re­becca Wood. It caused in­jury to her left eye­brow area and was bleed­ing.

“The de­fen­dant wanted to leave but given what had hap­pened he was pre­vented from leav­ing and the front door was blocked.

“He even­tu­ally left but re­turned and tried to get back in.

“Mr Ab­dul­baset, who tried to block the door, sus­tained a graze to his right eye and his wrist where the de­fen­dant tried to push him.

“The po­lice were called and the de­fen­dant was sep­a­rated from his wife and placed in­side a po­lice car. Ms Maxey was ex­tremely ag­i­tated and she was ar­rested.

“Phipps kicked in one of the back win­dows and he kicked a po­lice con­sta­ble in the stom­ach. He said he was ex­tremely wor­ried for his wife be­cause she was wrestling with other peo­ple on the ground.”

Phipps was later in­ter­viewed by po­lice, where he de­nied throw­ing a bot­tle of wine or as­sault­ing any­one and claimed he and his wife had been on the end of abuse by other cus­tomers.

He later pleaded guilty to two counts of caus­ing ac­tual bod­ily harm (ABH), two counts of com­mon as­sault and one count of re­sist­ing a po­lice con­sta­ble in the ex­e­cu­tion of his duty, on the first day of his trial.

Ms Maxey pleaded guilty to drunk and dis­or­derly be­hav­iour and was fined £235 at Cardiff Mag­is­trates’ Court.

De­fence bar­ris­ter Ieuan Ben­nett said his client was the pri­mary carer for his wife, who has been di­ag­nosed with fi­bromyal­gia [a long-term con­di­tion that causes pain all over the body], and his three chil­dren.

Mr Ben­nett said if he should go into im­me­di­ate cus­tody, there would need to be al­ter­na­tive care found for them.

He said: “The de­fen­dant did not go out look­ing for vi­o­lence that night but in drink he has com­pletely mis­judged the sit­u­a­tion and acted very badly in­deed but he ac­cepts he made the wrong de­ci­sion at the time and if he was sober he would not have acted like that.

“He ex­presses re­morse and wishes to apol­o­gise to the peo­ple he hurt that night.”

The court heard that Phipps was pre­vi­ously given a con­di­tional dis­charge af­ter he made threats of vi­o­lence to his chil­dren’s head teacher fol­low­ing a PTA meet­ing at school.

He also had pre­vi­ous con­vic­tions for crim­i­nal dam­age and of us­ing threat­en­ing, abu­sive or threat­en­ing words or be­hav­iour.

Sen­tenc­ing, Judge Tracey Lloy­dClarke said: “The ag­gra­vat­ing fea­tures in your case are your pre­vi­ous con­vic­tions and the fact you were in breach of a con­di­tional dis­charge at the time you com­mit­ted this of­fence.

“The lo­ca­tion and time of the of­fence is also an ag­gra­vat­ing fea­ture as mem­bers of staff were work­ing late at night at the take­away in the cen­tre of the city and there were other peo­ple present.”

Phipps, of Adams­down Lane, Cardiff, was sen­tenced to 16 months in prison.

Alex Phipps

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