Wigan's week in court

A round-up of people who have appeared at court.

Friday, 19th November 2021, 4:52 pm
Wigan and Leigh court

A Wigan serious assault trial has collapsed after the death of one of the defendants. Gareth Croston, 41, of Patricroft Road, Ince, had been due to stand trial this week along with two co-defendants accused of maliciously wounding Scott Dempsey with intent on April 11. But a hearing at Bolton Crown Court was told that Mr Croston had, sadly, died on October 17. The prosecution offered no evidence against the other two defendants - 44-year-old Andrew Maloney of Quarry Place, Scholes, and 37-year-old Ryan Halliwell, of Millers Lane in Platt Bridge - and so the judge found them not guilty and told them they were free to go. All three men had denied the charges against them.

A motorist who was caught at the wheel when almost three times the legal drink-drive limit has been banned from the road for 26 months. David Molyneux, 42, of Repton Avenue, Ince, appeared before Wigan magistrates to admit giving a reading of 101 microgrammes of alcohol in 100ml of breath when stopped by police in a Range Rover on the East Lancashire Road on October 15. The legal limit is 35 microgrammes. He can reduce his disqualification if he completes a state-sanctioned course for drink-drivers. Molyneux was also made the subject of an electronically-tagged curfew between 3am and 7pm until December 28 and he must also pay a fine, court costs and a victim services surcharge totalling £564.

A Wigan man will next appear before a judge after being charged with peddling drugs. Stewart Melling, 32, of Whitledge Green, Ashton, is charged with possession of cannabis and cannabis resin with intent to supply them on August 2, 2020 in Wigan. He will next appear at Bolton Crown Court on December 8.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

A serial Wigan thief who stole more than £750 worth of food and cosmetics from three stores has been jailed. Michael Huber, 33, of Keats Avenue, Worsley Mesnes, appeared before Wigan justices to plead guilty to four thefts, three of them of meat from Ashton’s Aldi on September 14, October 4 and October 19, plus one raid on the Food Warehouse from which he snatched chocolate bars on October 27. Huber further admitted to stealing two lots of perfume from Boots on November 2. He was given a total of 18 weeks behind bars, the bench telling him that his crimes had been aggravated by the fact that he was on bail at the time of the latter offences and was also not complying with post-sentence supervision for another offence. As well as the custodial sentence, he was ordered to pay £128 to victim services.

A man who finally admitted to attacking two Wigan police officers has been given a suspended prison term. Mark Phoenix, 28, of Chapel Street, Leigh, had previously appeared before justices to plead not guilty to assaulting PCs West and Bretherton on April 28 but pleaded guilty to having a craft knife the day before at Wigan police headquarters in Robin Park Road. A trial was set for September, but before it could begin he changed his police assault pleas to guilty. Returning to court to learn of his fate, Phoenix was given a 12-month custodial sentence but it was suspended for two years. He was also put on a drug rehab programme and ordered to complete 25 days of rehabilitation activities. There is also £200 to pay in compensation to his two victims.

A Wigan woman has admitted to making an indecent image of a child. Pauline Bradley, 21, of Kilburn Road, Orrell, appeared before borough justices to face a single charge of creating the “child porn” image on May 22 last year. The picture was judged to fall into the second more serious category (B). She was released on unconditional bail pending sentence at the same court on December 8.

A man who admitted to assaulting a woman and damaging her mobile phone has been given a community sentence. Dean Lyon, 34, of Bickershaw Lane, Leigh, appeared before Wigan justices to plead guilty to causing a woman actual bodily harm and wrecking the £120 device in August 2020. He was ordered to complete a “building better relationships” course, 15 days of rehabilitation activities and 100 hours of unpaid work. Lyon must also pay £180 in court costs and a victim services surcharge.

A young man has been accused of trying to cause another grievous bodily harm. Kieran Barrington, 21, of Forest Avenue, Beech Hill, is charged with attempting the unlawful and malicious wounding of Stephen Argent and possessing a kitchen knife on November 5. Because of the seriousness of the allegations, the case was immediately sent to Bolton Crown Court where Barrington will make a first appearance before a judge on December 13. He is remanded in custody until then. In the meantime, however he has been given a community punishment for stealing a woman’s keys on the same day. Barrington admitted the theft from Chelsy Hyemes and the bench was told the crime was committed while the defendant was already the subject of a community order for bank card fraud and handling stolen goods. His punishment included 230 hours of unpaid work, an alcohol treatment course and paying a fine and court costs totalling £135.

A 17-year-old girl has been banned from driving after admitting to a hit and run crash. The teenager, who cannot be named, appeared before Wigan justices to plead guilty to carelessly driving a Ford Fiesta which collided with a wall on Colliery Meadow, Wigan, on August 1 before leaving the scene without stopping or reporting the matter to police. She also admitted to driving without a licence or insurance. She was disqualified from the road for six months and must pay fines, a victim services surcharge and costs totalling £317.

A fugitive shoplifter who was fished out of the River Douglas by police after trying to hide under water has been jailed. Wigan magistrates heard that 27-year-old Kelvin Sharratt had been wanted for three raids on TK Maxx at Robin Park and one at the nearby Asda hypermarket when he was dragged soaking from the freezing waterway and arrested. He had taken beauty products totalling more than £200 from his visits in September and October to TK Maxx and two bottles of spirits from the superstore on September 21. The offences were committed while he was the subject of a community order for a theft from Boots. Sending him to prison for a total of 16 weeks, the bench told Sharratt, of no fixed address, that he had an “appalling” record for theft. He must also pay £128 to victim services.