A man smashed the ears and legs off of his girlfriend’s ‘sentimental’ china rabbit.
25-year-old Christian Bradford pleaded guilty to criminal damage when he appeared at Swindon Magistrates’ Court this afternoon (Tuesday).
Prosecutor Keith Ballinger said the victim left work after receiving a concerning call from the defendant – who was threatening to self-harm – on 18 October this year.
The woman, his then-girlfriend, phoned the police as she rushed home; she was advised to lock the door to prevent Bradford entering her property when he arrived.
When he turned up, he shouted through her letterbox and sent abusive text messages to the woman’s daughter. Police officers arrived shortly afterwards and spoke to him outside.
Bradford asked if he could go to the toilet prior to being taken to the police station, and an officer allowed him into the woman’s home to use her bathroom.
The officer escorted him into the address, but the defendant threw a laptop bag across the living room – hitting a ‘sentimental’ china rabbit. The ornament’s ears and legs were smashed.
Mr Ballinger said the defendant, formerly of Turnpike Road, Highworth but now homeless, has a previous conviction from December 2022 for a dissimilar offence.
A charge under the Malicious Communications Act in relation to the message sent to the victim’s daughter was dropped by the CPS.
Representing himself in court, Bradford said that he called the police on 101 to see if he could resolve the matter by paying for the damage to his then-partner’s broken rabbit, but claims he was advised the contacting her could be seen as witness intimidation.
“I did offer to pay for it before I came to court”, he said – adding that he was trying to throw the laptop bag on the sofa and did not damage the ornament intentionally.
Imposing a compensation-only order, magistrates told him to pay £35 to the victim.
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