Drunken teenager broke man's jaw in late night Wrexham punch-up

Published date: 13 January 2014 |
Published by: Staff reporter
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THE public is sick of having alcohol-fuelled, late night violence on their streets, a judge has said.

Judge Niclas Parry was speaking as he sentenced a teenager who admitted breaking another young man’s jaw.

It happened when two groups of people fell out at McDonald’s in Wrexham in the early hours the morning. They went outside to sort matters out and ended up struggling in an alley.

Ryan Winter, 18, of Heol Owain, Coedpoeth, punched his victim hard in the face. The victim later needed surgery for a fractured jaw.

Judge Niclas Parry told Winter, who admitted inflicting grievous bodily harm: “This was loutish, alcohol-fuelled behaviour,, the kind of behaviour that the public of Wrexham is sick of having to see in the early hours of the morning. It has to be deterred.”

The judge said it was a sustained assault. Winter had a previous caution for violence in drink and the judge said only custody could be justified.

But he had entered an early guilty plea. He was genuinely remorseful and he had in mind that those with whom he had been involved were willing to take part in violence.

He was only 18, he had the prospect of work and therefore his 10-month youth custody sentence would be suspended for 18 months.

Winter was ordered to carry out 250 hours unpaid work and must remain indoors for the next two months between 6.30pm and 6am.

There was every prospect that Winter would soon be working and the judge said he would therefore order him to pay £400 compensation to his victim.

Judge Parry told Mold Crown Court: “If you were to re-offend or did not do the work or breach the curfew I would have to send you into custody. I take the view that you are worth a chance. Prove me right.”

Emmalyne Downing, prosecuting, said the violence occurred in the early hours of August 2 and was captured on CCTV, which she played to the court.

A manager at McDonald’s had tried to calm matters down but then asked the groups to leave.

The two groups ended up walking outside and going into an alley and Winter was seen to strike the victim hard to the face. He was one of two people who had hit the victim.

The victim had to have surgery for a fractured jaw, and was on a soft diet for six weeks.

Interviewed, Winter admitted hitting the man in the face but said he could not remember doing it three or four times.

He agreed that he had lost his temper and hit the other man very hard.

Stephen Edwards, defending, said his client was still very young, he was 17 at the time, and still had “a lot of growing up to do”.

There had been a sea-change in his attitude and behaviour since the incident.

He had a partner and had settled down. He rarely went out and there was every prospect that once training was completed then he could take up a responsible position as a crane slinger.

Everyone had been drinking, and the other side had gone outside voluntarily to fight.
There was an argument, he accepted throwing punches, one of which caught the complainant in the face.

His client was not the only one who struck the victim but Mr Edwards said his client accepted that he caused the “very serious and unpleasant injury”.

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