Judge tells thug he's lucky to be charged with ABH.
A JUDGE slammed a decision to undercharge a violent attacker who left his victim needing surgery and a metal plate inserted in his face.
Vicious thug Ciaron Wilson, 33, lulled a man into a false sense of security before "walloping" him with a savage punch, knocking him to the ground on Albert Road, Middlesbrough.
But despite the victim suffering a fractured left eye socket and needing surgery to insert a metal plate, the Crown Prosecution Service only charged him with assault causing actual bodily harm (ABH) rather than the more serious charge of grievous bodily harm (GBH).
The charge meant Judge Sean Morris's sentencing powers were limited when Wilson appeared in court.
He told Wilson: "That was GBH by anybody's standards, you are fortunate that in the view of the CPS it's only ABH. And therefore the sentence I can pass on you is less than half of what I think it deserves."
The defendant appeared at Teesside Crown Court on Friday to be sentenced for a host of offences carried out throughout 2018, including assault causing actual bodily harm; seven thefts; two common assaults and two bail offences.
The court was told how the serial offender, who has 25 previous convictions, had carried out the ABH assault on New Year's Day in 2018, in the early hours of the morning.
Prosecutor Jenny Haigh said Wilson had spoken to the victim and put his arm round his shoulder as they walked between Chambers and Bar Cuda, on Albert Road, the judge said to "lull him into a false sense of security".
She said: "The defendant swung his free arm towards the victim and made contact with the left side of his face."
The punch knocked the man to the floor. He had to have surgery on his fractured eye socket and have a metal plate secured. The court was told that one year on he is "still in pain".
A statement from the victim said: "This incident has affected me, I have been very stressed and worried in general.
My vision was affected therefore even driving has been an issue."
Wilson was also sentenced for a spate of thefts, including two which saw those trying to stop him assaulted.
On one instance on July 23 last year, he had entered Debenhams, in Middlesbrough, and snatched shorts worth PS94.50, before leaving the store.
Ms Haigh said a security guard followed him and was "threatened by the defendant" who told him: "I'm going to stab you."
"He was detained outside the bus station and he assaulted the security guard by getting him in a headlock, causing him to struggle to breathe for a few seconds," she told the court. He punched the security guard before dropping the shorts and making off.
Just weeks later, on August 15, he entered Boyes store in the HillStreet Shopping Centre, where he grabbed nine shirts and put them in a shopping bag. When he went to leave, a witness attempted to confront him but was pushed out of the way, the court heard.
His other thefts included attempting to steal PS223 of electronic items in Tesco, five toothbrushes from Wilko worth PS90, and cleaning items from Sainsburys worth PS61.86.
Michele Turner, defending, said there were circumstances that led up to his spate of offending, including misusing drugs. She added he'd had a troubled youth and self-admitted to Roseberry Park Hospital in January 2018. "He started reverting to what he knows best, medicating with street drugs," she said.
She said last year he was ejected from his home, and was "essentially living on the streets, occasionally living with friends on sofas".
Ms Turner added that he was now benefiting from the treatment of a psychologist in Preston prison.
Sentencing him, judge Sean Morris said: "I have heard that you, now that you are in prison, have managed to start turning your life around.
"So I'm going to be merciful, more merciful than I originally intended."
The judge jailed Wilson, of Saltwells Road, Middlesbrough, for a total of 21 months and urged him "grasp this opportunity".
Ciaron Wilson, 33, jailed for 21 months for ABH, seven thefts, two common assaults and two bail offences
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|Publication:||Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)|
|Date:||Jan 18, 2019|
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