Petty squabble ended in disaster

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AN HGV driver who flung a pint of beer over another pub customer accidentally also threw the glass leaving the victim scarred for life.

A court heard the incident in a Wigan pub followed a petty squabble between the men some weeks earlier over who could sit on a particular seat in another pub.

Sentencing Robert Edwards, Judge Stephen Clarke, said: “This is an example where some minor rather stupid incident a few weeks before has not been resolved there and then and people let it fester until the next meeting.”

He told the 52-year-old that he accepted the had not intended to cause the facial injuries suffered by victim Colin Breheny. “It was reckless rather than intentional.”

Edwards, of Short Street, Pemberton, pleaded guilty to actual bodily harm.

Prosecutor Harry Pepper told Liverpool Crown Court that some weeks prior to November 15 the two men were both in a Wigan pub. Mr Breheny left his seat by the fire, which he regarded as his, and when he returned Edwards was sitting on it and refused to leave. “It was all very childish but was the catalyst for the events on November 15.”

On that evening both men were by chance in Pub No 15 on Ormskirk Road, Pemberton. Edwards was wrongly accused of stealing a woman’s purse and Mr Breheny stuck up for him saying he had done nothing wrong.

But while Mr Breheny was sitting on a bar stool playing on his phone Edwards picked up Mr Breheny’s pint of beer and threw the beer over him and the glass hit him in the face.

Edwards ran off and the victim was taken to Wigan Infirmary where it was found he had 2.5cm gash to his upper lip and a 2cm abrasion below his nose. He was transferred to Manchester Royal Infirmary to see a facial surgeon and had stitches inserted.

“The laceration to his lip will leave a permanent scar,” said Mr Pepper. In a victim impact statement he said he was angry and upset about what had happened.”

Kevin Liston, defending, said that Edwards “should have known better than to become involved in a stupid and petty squabble which started over who had the right to sit on a stool in the different public house some weeks earlier.

“He accepts the inappropriate nature of his action and is apologetic.”

He was sentenced to 12 months’ imprisonment suspended for two years, ordered to pay his victim £1,600, carry out 80 hours’ unpaid work and made the subject of a community order.