Man jailed after assault victim tracks him down on Facebook

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Staff reporter

A MAN has been jailed for a series of assaults after one of his victims tracked him down on Facebook.

Scott Simmonds was identified after the victim turned detective and found his profile picture on the social networking website.

He told police who then arrested Simmonds.

Mold Crown Court heard how, while drunk, the 22-year-old had committed six offences within a 10-week period.

On February 4 he launched an unprovoked attack on a total stranger, Barry Machell, while he was waiting at a bus stop in Flint.

He was arrested after Mr Machell identified him through the profile picture on his Facebook page and was later bailed.

While on bail and so drunk he could hardly stand, he punched another man in the face as he filled his car with petrol, said Judge Nic Parry.

Then, while on bail for both incidents, he launched a revenge attack on the victim of the garage attack because he had told police what Simmonds had done.

Simmonds tried to attack him with a hammer and when he failed punched him instead.

The victim fled in terror and Simmonds then used the hammer to smash his car windows.

Judge Parry told Simmonds he was lucky not to have been charged with intimidation.

Simmonds, of Woodfield Avenue, Flint, was jailed for 10 months after he admitted three charges of assault, two charges of criminal damage and possessing the hammer as an offensive weapon.

The judge said the case was aggravated by Simmonds' previous convictions which included three for assault and eight for causing damage.

Emily Downing, prosecuting, told the court that on February 4 Barry Machell was waiting at a bus stop in Flint as he made his way home from his parents’ house on his 21st birthday.

He was approached by a couple of men and without warning Simmonds grabbed him around the neck and tried to take his legs from under him.

Mr Machell tried to push him away but both ran at him causing him to fall on to the pavement and he was punched.

Mr Machell later made his own inquiries via the internet and found Simmonds’ profile on Facebook and was able to identity him to the police.

On February 12 Sion Phipps was putting petrol in his car at Flint Service Station when Simmonds approached and spoke to one of his passengers.He was drunk and knocked the wing mirror off the car.

When Mr Phipps said there was no need for that he was attacked.

On March 22, Mr Phipps was visiting his grandfather but found Simmonds in the street. Mr Phipps tried to run to his car as he saw the defendant approach waving a claw hammer but he tripped. Simmonds caught up with him and hit him in the lower back.

His basis of plea was that he had swung the hammer but that the blow to Mr Phipps’ back was with his fist, not the hammer, was accepted by the prosecution.

When Mr Phipps was able to get away he heard a smashing noise and later found three windows on his car had been smashed.

He feared his car was an insurance write-off and he could not afford to repair the car, which he relied upon for work.

John Philpotts, defending, said his client had admitted a series of common assaults but fortunately the injuries caused were not significant.

It was his first time in the crown court and he knew he would be sent to prison. 

See full story in the Leader

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