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Friday, 18 April 2014

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Drunk Barrow bully, 21, avoids jail after attacking boy, 14

A BARROW bully who attacked a 14-year-old boy has appeared in court.

Liam Woodburn, 21, was told by a judge at Preston Crown Court he had assaulted an innocent, small and timid boy after mistakenly thinking he was riding his friend’s bike.

Woodburn, of Langdale Grove, Barrow, subjected the boy to a sustained attack, said the judge.

Woodburn had admitted common assault. He was given 14 weeks’ jail, suspended for a year, with 12 months’ supervision and an order to carry out 120 hours’ unpaid work for the community when he appeared for sentencing on Monday.

Judge Graham Knowles QC made an order protecting the identity of the youngsters in the case.

Miss Natalia Cornwall, prosecuting, said the offence dated back to the night of October 15 last year. The boy was on the back of a bicycle which was ridden close to the defendant’s grandmother’s home in Salthouse Road, Barrow.

Woodburn, who was standing outside, stopped the bicycle from passing.

He grabbed the arm of the 14-year- old boy, accusing him of stealing a phone and keys. After about 10 minutes he took the youngster down a side street and assaulted him.

The boy ended up with bruising to his stomach and left wrist.

The boy was said to be very distressed by what took place. When later spoken to by police, Woodburn said he thought the teenager had been on a bike belonging to a friend, but had later realised he had made a mistake about the bike.

Mr Michael Brady, defending, told the court: “In drink, the defendant made a mistake of fact. He believed the complainant was in possession of a bike belonging to a friend of his. He acknowledges he was wrong about that. There was a loss of temper in drink.”

Woodburn’s mother told the court he had changed since and did not drink much at all.

The judge told Woodburn: “You had had too much to drink. You took the law into your own hands which is a very serious and very bad thing.

“Your victim was wholly innocent. It makes it worse.

“He was a small and timid boy who was bullied by you.

“It was a sustained attack. You are remorseful, I accept.”

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