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Sunday, 05 July 2015

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Man on night out in Barrow dragged teenage girl by her hair – court

AN ex-pat mining manager has to pay more than £3,400 to the courts after he admitted a drunken assault on a woman which saw her dragged across a road by her hair.

James Wheeler admitted he “totally went over the top” as he leapt to the defence of his teenage sister after a night out in Barrow celebrating his 30th birthday ended up in a street brawl.

He appeared before Furness Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday and admitted using threatening behaviour, assaulting Victoria Murphy and criminal damage to a Vauxhall Corsa on October 13, last year.

Prosecuting, Mrs Lisa Hine said Wheeler, who works in Africa, was back in the country visiting friends across the UK and had been out in Barrow with family and friends for his birthday.

She said it was about 5.05am when they entered a Chinese takeaway in Cavendish Street and ordered some food.

Mrs Hine said a man in the premises squirted water in his face and said it had been instigated by two women, Miss Murphy and her friend.

She added that Wheeler’s 18-year-old sister had leapt to his defence and an argument ensued.

The prosecutor said: “As Miss Murphy left to get into a taxi the defendant grabbed her by her hair and she was slammed into the takeaway window and he pulled her across the road as if he was dragging a body. Men came to her defence and a there was a ruckus.

“A car was parked outside the takeaway and Charlotte Brown was driving it. The group of men fighting, including the defendant, came towards her car and her passenger got out to try and stop them and was punched in the face by an unknown person.”

Miss Laura Baumanis, defending said her client was extremely remorseful about his actions and his criminal record meant that he could not now apply for Australian citizenship as he had planned.

She said: “Mr Wheeler was protecting his 18-year-old sister. He may have been a bit over-protective. He fully admits that he totally went over the top.

“He accepts he behaved inappropriately. He is extremely remorseful and devastated to find himself in this position.”

Wheeler, who lives in Tanzania but gave his father’s address of Great Stanhope Street, Bath, was fined £2,500, ordered to pay £500 compensation to Miss Murphy and £200 to the car owner Miss Brown. He was told to pay a £120 victim surcharge and £85 towards the prosecution costs.

Have your say

What was a 30 year old mother doing out at 5.05 am? Think she needs to start looking after herself before accusing other people.

Posted by Jim Morris on 27 February 2014 at 08:51

Yet another violent assault in Barrow ends up with a slap on the wrist.

Posted by Bazza B on 22 February 2014 at 08:14

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