Blackpool: From the courts 25/05/17

Here is a round-up of some of the cases at Blackpool Magistrates Court.

Thursday, 25th May 2017, 7:00 am
Updated Sunday, 4th June 2017, 9:13 pm
Blackpool Magistrates' Court

Andrew Darlington, 36, theft

A prolific shoplifter with a drug problem stole hundreds of pounds of goods from shops in Blackpool.

Andrew Darlington, 36, of Shannon Street, Blackpool, pleaded guilty to two offences of shoplifting and asked for 12 similar offences to be considered.

He was sentenced to 16 weeks jail suspended for 12 months, ordered to do four months drug rehabilitation and told to pay £115 victims’ surcharge by magistrates.

Prosecutor, Matthew Siddall, said Darlington stole 13 jars of coffee valued at £38 from B and M Bargains on May 3 before going to Marks and Spencer and taking meat valued at £87, where he was apprehended.

He had a record of 74 offences mainly for theft and breaching court orders.

The 12 offences Darlington asked to be considered involved between £300 to £400 of goods.

Angela Brooks, for the probation service, said Darlington was already on two court orders with drug rehabilitation orders for offences of theft. His probation officer said he had shown little regard for court orders and missed drug rehabilitation appointments.

Patrick Nelligan, defending, said his client, who had pleaded guilty immediately, had committed crime to fund his drug habit.

Mr Nelligan added: “He is on a prescription for methadone.

“He wants to do something about his drug addiction but it’s difficult for him.”

Anthony Hurley, 26, assault

A son accused trying to set his mother on fire has made his first appearance at court.

Anthony Hurley is alleged to have attempted to set ablaze a sock his mum was wearing while she was lying down at her home.

Hurley, 26, of St Chads Road, South Shore, pleaded not guilty to assaulting his mother on April 30.

He was bailed to August 8 for trial by magistrates.

Hurley must not contact his mother as a condition of his bail.

David Smith, 22, assault

A court has refused to allow a man’s bail conditions to be altered so he can be with his girlfriend as she gives birth to their first child.

David Smith, 22, of Argosy Avenue, Grange Park, applied for his bail conditions to be changed as partner Siobhan was taken into Blackpool Victoria Hospital .

Smith had previously been bailed on the condition he did not contact his girlfriend after being accused of pushing her into a wall and squeezing her around the throat when she was eight months pregnant.

He had pleaded not guilty to assaulting her and bailed for trial on July 11.

Martin Hillson, defending, asked for Smith’s bail condition not to contact his girlfriend to be temporarily lifted. She had been admitted Blackpool Victoria Hospital and been induced at 4am yesterday.

Mr Hillson said: “He wants to be in the delivery room during the labour. His partner also wanted him there.”

Prosecutor, Pam Smith, said the Crown opposed Smith’s bail condition being varied.

Magistrates refused to alter Smith’s bail to allow him to attend the birth saying it was for the mother-to-be’s protection.

Rhys Price, 22, assault

A man was one of the ring leaders of a group which threw bottles at another group on Blackpool Promenade.

Rhys Price attacked another man in the other group repeatedly punching him in the head leaving him severely battered and bruised.

Price, 22, of London Road, Layton, pleaded guilty to assault causing actual bodily harm.

Prosecutor, Matthew Siddall, said Price was among a group from which bottles were thrown at another group of two men and a woman on January 21.

One of the men in the group was hit on the head by a bottle.

Price later punched that man about the face several times leaving him bruised and swollen.

At the time of the offence Price was on a suspended prison sentence for an offence of assault causing actual bodily harm.

Patrick Nelligan, defending, said his client had mental health problems.

Price was bailed to appear for sentence at Preston Crown Court on June 21.

Christopher Campbell, 53, causing obstruction by trespassing on the railway

A man’s drunken ramble on railway lines cost the country more than £80,000, a court was told.

Christopher Campbell caused 365 train services to be delayed for 2,037 minutes which cost Network Rail almost £82,000.

A police force helicopter, police officers, fire and rescue personnel and ambulance staff all had to be deployed in the search for Campbell, which added to the cost.

Campbell, 53, of Hazeldene Road, Fleetwood, was charged under The Malicious Damage Act 1861 and pleaded guilty to causing obstruction by trespassing on the railway.

He was sentenced to 12 weeks jail, suspended for 12 months, ordered to do 40 days rehabilitation supervised by the probation service and told to pay Network Rail £350 compensation by magistrates.

Presiding magistrate, Michael Leigh, told him: “You realise the huge cost this has caused.

“We feel it is so serious it must be a custodial sentence but suspended.”

Prosecutor, Pam Smith, said Campbell was on a train travelling from Blackpool North rail station to Poulton on June 6.

He told the conductor he intended to get off at Poulton and walk along the railway lines to Blackburn.

At 5.45am Campbell was seen on the lines and the emergency services were alerted.

Two police officers boarded a train which inched forward until the officers saw Campbell in the undergrowth near Holts Lane Crossing.

As the officers left the train to detain him, Campbell crawled through a storm drain and ran off.

Trains were halted and a police helicopter, police officers and fire and rescue personnel were all deployed to look for him.

Campbell was eventually found in undergrowth at the side of the railway lines at 8.28am.

It was noted he was drunk.

He was taken by ambulance to hospital.

The prosecutor added: “The cost to Network Rail was £81,627 and there were costs to the constabulary with the deployment of police officers, emergency personnel and the force helicopter.”

Martin Hillson, defending, said Campbell had significant mental health problems and he had repeatedly slipped through the net for help for those.

His problems had been exacerbated by the drink issue he had.

The defence added: “He does understand the knock-on effect his behaviour had and he is remorseful about that. His actions were not premeditated.”