South Shields attack on partner means £400 compensation bill

The case was heard at South Shields Magistrates' Court.
The case was heard at South Shields Magistrates' Court.

A man who assaulted his partner in a drunken rage at her South Shields home - before ripping the door off her fridge - has been ordered to pay £400 compensation.

Clare Irving, prosecuting, told South Shields Magistrates Court that Robert Andrew Bray had grabbed the woman by the arms, ‘pushing her to the floor and causing her bruising’.

It is difficult for me to mitigate the offence, given he has little or no recollection of it.

Joanne Gatens

“He has ripped the door off the fridge, then driven off drunk,” she said.

The woman, with whom Bray had been in a relationship for five or six months, had experienced domestic violence in a previous relationship and said in a victim impact statement: “This has made all that come flooding back.”

Bray had been stopped by police but refused to give a breath sample, wrapping his legs around one of the officer’s leg and threatening to choke him out.

“I understand choking out is an expression used in martial arts,” said Ms Irving.

Bray, 24, of Bywell Grove, Shiremoor, admitted assault, criminal damage, resisting a police officer and failure to provide a breath specimen.

A probation report said there were issues to address in terms of ‘his thinking skills and alcohol misuse.’

Joanne Gatens, for Bray, said he accepted the relationship was over as a result of his actions: “It is difficult for me to mitigate the offence, given he has little or no recollection of it,” she said, and urged magistrates to go along with the probation recommendation.

Bray was sentenced to an 18-month community order with 25 days’ rehabilitation activity and 100 hours unpaid work, ordered to pay £400 compensation and banned from driving for three years.