Sychdyn man banned from pubs in four counties


Staff reporter (Leader Live)

A man who was injured while serving in the RAF and later suffered head injuries when he was attacked has been banned from entering pubs in four counties.

Paul David Staniforth, 49, had been relying on alcohol when he felt down and he had not been taking his medication, a court heard.

Staniforth, of Ffordd Ganol, Sychdyn, near Mold, admitted damaging glasses and threatening behaviour after customers at a Chester Hotel were frightened and a member of staff were threatened on June 6.

While on bail, he admitted a public order offence in the street outside his home on July 24.

Flintshire Magistrates Court heard that he suffered flashbacks and that when in drink he shouted abuse and swore, aiming it at those responsible for his problems in the past.

District Judge Gwyn Jones gave him a 90-day prison sentence suspended for 12 months, placed him on supervision and banned him from all licensed premises in Flintshire, Denbighshire, Wrexham and Cheshire for 12 months.

He was ordered to pay £100 compensation to the Blossoms Hotel in Chester and £180 prosecution costs. The judge said Staniforth had not been taking his medication and had been abusing alcohol.

The order would give him an opportunity to rid himself of the problem, he said, and urged him to take advantage of the help available to him. Otherwise, if he breached the order, then he faced imprisonment, the judge warned.

Prosecutor Matthew Ellis told how the incident at The Blossoms occurred when Staniforth was drunk. Customers felt intimidated by him and were moved by the manager but then Staniforth followed them, was abusive, and picked up a glass.

Staniforth threatened to smash the manager’s face in and then damaged glasses by sweeping them off a table with his arm.

Later interviewed, he said he had been to Chester, decided to stay and booked in at the hotel and put himself as “eight or nine” on a one to 10 sobriety scale.

He explained that he had mental health problems following an accident in 2000 when he was serving with the RAF. He then suffered head injuries when he was attacked in 2013.

He used alcohol to alleviate feelings of anxiety when he was down.

Staniforth said that he did not remember what he had said but accepted that he was a large, well-built man and that people would have been frightened of him.

He was seeking help through the Veteran’s Association and had an appointment with a psychiatrist.

On July 24 there was an incident when he was seen shouting and screaming in the street outside his home.

He offered to fight a painter and decorator who was working nearby.

A neighbour alerted the police because he was concerned about Staniforth’s mother who had been pleading with him to go inside.

At one stage Staniforth held his hands to his ears and was screaming.

The neighbour described a series of problems in recent times which was affecting their quality of life.

Arrested and interviewed, Staniforth said he was diabetic, suffered post traumatic stress disorder, depression and had a brain injury.

He was on anti-depressants and received support from the North Wales brain injury unit.

That day he had consumed wine in Mold, was concerned about walking through Sychdyn and feared attack, got a taxi home but suffered flashbacks.

He had no recollection of what he had done and was visibly distressed when it was explained to him.

He said he was saddened by what he had heard and explained that he could not control his flashbacks.

Euros Jones, defending, said that a full pre-sentence report explained his client’s position, together with a report from The Walton Centre in Liverpool and a letter from Staniforth himself.

Since the last incident he had stopped drinking alcohol and his medication had been sorted out.

He was on sleeping tablets and for the first time in years he was sleeping through the night, which made an immense difference to his life.

l An application by the prosecution for an ASBO, opposed by the defence, was adjourned for a hearing in November.

See full story in the Leader

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