A 28-year-old man who assaulted a woman and her young baby in the presence of her other son has escaped a prison sentence following his sentencing in the Royal Court yesterday.
Mark Christopher James McLeod Goodchild was sentenced to 12 months’ probation and ordered to complete a total of 145 hours of community service after admitting the assaults at a town property in February.
The court heard that the defendant, who had been drinking, had gone to the property early on Sunday 9th February and, having initially been refused entry, had found a way into the building and had threatened to kick in the front door of her flat unless he was allowed in.
He left after a few minutes, but returned a short time later when the building’s fire alarm went off and confronted the woman in the darkened hallway, accusing her of calling the police. He punched and slapped her, not realising she had the baby in her arms, forcing her to take evasive action which caused the baby’s face to come into contact with the floor, resulting in bruising.
“When he realised what he’d done,” said defence Advocate Pierre Landick, “he picked up the child and cradled it, went downstairs and compliantly handed it over to the paramedics”, as emergency services were attending the scene to deal with the suspected fire.
Sentencing him, Royal Court Commissioner Julian Clyde-Smith described his conduct as “reprehensible and inexcusable” and said it would normally merit a custodial sentence, but said that he would benefit from the “therapeutic” treatment and orders imposed as a condition of his probation.
The accused, who pleaded guilty to both assaults, as well as to violently resisting arrest when the police van arrived at the scene, was also banned from licensed premises for a period of 12 months.
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