A man has been jailed for attacking a stranger as she walked her dog in a Swindon park.
Connor Stevenson, 18, launched a violent attack on the 50-year-old woman in Mannington Recreation Ground, Rodbourne, on 29 May last year.
Natalie Cheesman, prosecuting, told Swindon Magistrates’ Court that the victim’s dog had run off towards a group of teenagers and as she went to retrieve it, she was insulted.
The then 17-year-old commented on the ‘state of her teeth’, before asking if she was ‘druggy’. In response, the woman made a remark about Stevenson’s brightly coloured nails.
Following the exchange of insults, he punched his victim in the face up to five times until she fell to the floor. Once on the ground, he jumped on her and pulled her hair.
She was able to get up, and as she fled the defendant then picked up a stick and chased her.
A short time later, Wiltshire Police were called to the scene. The woman suffered minor injuries in the attack and did not require medical attention.
In a statement to the officers, the victim labelled Stevenson a “horrible little sh*t” and confirmed that the male was not known to her prior to the incident.
The court heard he has a “long history of violent offending” and is currently a serving prisoner at HM Prison Bullingdon having been sentenced to 26 months custody.
Defending, Gordon Hotson, said his client was 17 years old at the time of the assault and this offence pre-dates the one he is serving a prison term for.
“He was shouting at the woman to get her dog on a lead and that descended into verbal insults each way, including about his long and brightly coloured nails he had at the time”, he said.
Adding: “He accepts he did strike the woman one a number of occasions, but what my friend did not read out from the statement, was that she admits hitting him with her dog lead.”
Mr Hoston said the incident followed concerns about her dog’s aggression towards the group – who had a dog on a lead in their company.
Describing the event as a “really really nasty attack on a stranger in the park”, magistrates imposed an eight-week prison sentence. No costs or compensation were awarded.
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