A man assaulted a female shop worker after being told he was banned from One Stop – but was kicked out of court when he started talking over his solcitior.
Sean Penny pleaded guilty to two assaults and a charge of using threatening or abusive words to cause harassment, alarm or distress at Swindon Magistrates’ Court today (28 September).
The defendant, of Wheeler Place, Rowde, appeared at the same court earlier this month to be sentenced for assaulting a man at Unity House, a homeless hostel in Chippenham.
Pauline Lambert, prosecuting, said the incident occurred when the 33-year-old entered One Stop in Market Place, Chippenham, on 8 August this year.
A female shop worker told him that he was banned from the store and asked him to return the items in his hands and leave the building.
He pushed the woman and called her a “f***ing pussy”, Ms Lambert said, adding that her male colleague then proceeded to push Penny out of the store. He then slammed the door, which made contact with the female worker.
After being ejected, Penny told the male worker that he would “come back later and do you in”.
In her statement, the female shop staff member – who was left uninjured by shaken – said she was too scared to get the bus home after her shift and obtained a lift in a car, fearing that the defendant would return to carry out his threat.
The day after, in a separate incident, Penny assaulted a man at Unity House – pushing him during an argument in which he was told he was banned from entering. He went one to shout abuse at the man, before lunging towards him as if to try and bite his nose.
Charlotte Frizzell, defending, said that her client is complying with the community order imposed by the court on 7 September and is due to start unpaid work on 3 October.
As Ms Frizzell provided his defence to District Judge Joanna Dickens, he continuously interrupted her. After ignoring the Judge’s repeated pleas to be quiet, Penny was kicked out of the courtroom and the case was put back in the list.
Returning to the courtroom an hour later, the defendant said: “I would like to apologise, I’m sorry.”
Ms Frizzell continued, stating that Penny was binge drinking and mixing with unsavoury characters after his girlfriend ended their relationship and he was asked to leave her home.
But following the recent resumption of the relationship, he is now a stay-at-home father – looking after his own young child and his girlfriend’s children (to which he is their step-father), allowing her to go to work.
She said the assault in One Stop was reckless, rather than intentional – as Penny attempted to leave the store. Ms Frizzell said he had become angry after being told he was banned.
District Judge Dickens said: “Assaults on shop staff are really serious.
“They probably don’t get paid a lot of money and they don’t get the same protection police officers get, and still have to deal with shoplifting and things like that, they are frontline staff really.
“You’re a 33-year-old father, you’re clearly able to be responsible to look after the children.”
She imposed a second community order, with the requirement to carry out a further 60 hours of unpaid work. He was told to pay £100 compensation to the two people he assaulted.
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