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Goddard, who now has nine criminal convictions, has been fined and slapped with a restraining order after shouting and grabbing at the camera of a journalist covering a city centre demo for the M.E.N

‘Yellow vest’ protester James Goddard has been found guilty of assaulting a photographer as he covered a demo in Manchester city centre for the M.E.N.

Goddard, 29, grabbed at Joel Goodman’s camera as he took pictures and recorded video of the protest in Piccadilly Gardens in February.

He denied attacking him and defended himself in what was a heated trial attended by a number of his supporters, several of whom were removed from the courtroom at Manchester Magistrates’ Court.

However a judge this afternoon ruled his actions were unlawful and convicted him of common assault.

He was fined £300 and ordered to pay £500 in prosecution costs and £50 compensation to his victim.

A two-year restraining order was also put in place which prevents the defendant from approaching Mr Goodman.

He was found not guilty of a public order offence of using threatening words or behaviour to cause his victim to fear “immediate” violence after he told his victim he would “take his head off his shoulders.”

He told the court his words were a “common English idiom.” Judge Mark Hadfield said as the threat of violence was not “immediate”, the offence was not made out.

Before entering court a video of Goddard was uploaded onto Twitter of him saying he hoped the “got the right judge” and that he “got the right result”.

The court heard Goddard has nine previous convictions, including theft from an employer and failing to surrender in April 2010 and a racially aggravated public order offence in February 2011.

He told the court he now works as a “content creator” and is an “independent journalist”.

Police were earlier called into court after Mr Goddard surreptitiously held up a piece of paper with the words, “Pussy coward leftist soy boy” written on it as Mr Goodman entered the witness box.

Proceedings were temporarily halted whilst police officers, who were harangued by Mr Goddard’s supporters labelling them ‘jobsworths’, seized the piece of paper.

District Judge Hadfield warned that could have been treated as contempt of court but allowed it to “lie on the slate” and continue the trial after Mr Goodman ensured him he was happy to continue and be cross-examined by Goddard, who defended himself.

In video footage of the incident on Saturday February 9 this year from a Mr Goodman’s body-worn camera, Goddard lunges at Mr Goodman, twice trying to grab his camera as his victim backs away shouting: “Don’t you dare touch my lense!”

About 20 minutes later Mr Goodman told the court Goddard approached him again.

Goddard is filmed saying: “When there’s no police around here I’m going to take your head off your shoulders.

“Next time you are in London, you are finished, all the football lads know you. Next time you are down, see what happens.”

Mr Goodman told the court he took that to mean Goddard would “assault me in the future” and that is “scared me a bit.”

Using a megaphone and surrounded by yellow vest supporters, Goddard is then recorded referring to “Joel” and saying: “Your card is marked.”

Around 20 minutes later there is a third encounter where the two arguing about freedom of speech but this ends in a handshake.

Goddard was arrested five days after the incident at his home address on Kelvindale Drive, Timperley, Trafford.

He made no comment in his police interview but later claimed self-defence.

In court he He described his prosecution as a “witch hunt” and claimed he was being persecuted because Greater Manchester Police “fear the rise of the yellow vests.”

He said he had pushed Mr Goodman’s camera as he believed the pictures would be “given to organisations that tried to do me serious harm”.

He said: “I’m not proud of what I said. It’s a common English idiom. I wanted him out of my personal space.”

He added he had released a video “to my 15,000 followers” apologising for the comments to Mr Goodman.

Manchester Evening News

Grant Ainley was due to be jailed for 20 weeks when he ran from Kirklees Magistrates’ Court

A man fled from court after being jailed for attacking a security guard who challenged him as he stole from a Huddersfield supermarket.

Grant Ainley bit the Asda worker’s little finger and threatened to smash a stolen bottle of champagne over his colleague’s head.

The 35-year-old was jailed for 20 weeks by Kirklees magistrates but ran from the court building before he could be taken into custody.

The incident happened at the Aspley branch of the supermarket on August 29 when Ainley was challenged as he tried to take two bottles of champagne.

Prosecutor Alex Bozman said that he told the security guard to get out of his way.

When the member of staff asked Ainley to put the alcohol down he threatened to smash a bottle over his head, magistrates were told.

The security guard managed to take one of the bottles off Ainley but he maintained a grip on the other one.

With help of his colleague Nicholas Foard the security guard managed to detain him, Mr Bozman said.

He told magistrates: “Ainley made threats that he would spit and bite at them.

“He scratched Mr Foard on his hand with his nails and bit him on the little finger, causing injury.”

Ainley, of Eastlands in Almondbury, was arrested but refused to comply with a police station drug test.

Mr Foard said in a victim personal statement read out to the court: “I come to work every day to do a job I enjoy.

“I do not come to work for people to steal from us or, even worse, get assaulted.

“My injuries may be scratches and bites but I do not know if he has any diseases.”

Ainley pleaded guilty to stealing from the store, assault and refusing to provide a sample for a Class A drug test.

He also admitted to the theft of meat and wine totalling £116 from Almondbury Co-op between June 7 and 17.

Jonathan Slawinski, mitigating, explained that Ainley had struggled with a drug problem since the age of 19.

He had managed to overcome this problem but still owed money to drug dealers.

Mr Slawinski explained: “When people stop using drugs they don’t always escape their past as debts catch up with them.

“The only way he knew how to get rid of the debt was sadly to do what he knows how to do and steals from the shops.”

He added that Ainley had been drinking at the time of the thefts but was “somewhat ashamed” of what he did to the security guard.

As magistrates pronounced their sentence, Ainley fled from courtroom number two before security staff could take him into custody.

A warrant was issued for his arrest. When he is released from his prison sentence he will have to pay Mr Foard £100 compensation.

Huddersfield Examiner

A thief who was short of money in the run up to Christmas targeted the same shop two days running.

Craig Gilroy, 30, of George Street, North Shore, pleaded guilty to two offences of theft.

He was given a 12 months conditional discharge and ordered to pay £47 compensation with £85 costs plus £20 victims’ surcharge.

Prosecutor, Pam Smith, said Gilroy was detained at the B and M Bargains store, Whitegate Drive, on December 23 at noon, after stealing three jars of coffee valued at £14.

CCTV showed he had been in the shop the day before and taken four bottles of liqueur worth £47.

He had a record of 29 previous offences of theft and similar matters and at the time of the offence was on post prison sentence supervision.

Howard Green, defending, said in the run up to Christmas his client was short of money and decided to steal to get some. Gilroy, who had been diagnosed with bi-polar disorder, was estranged from his family.

He had no permanent accommodation but was allowed to sleep at the address he had given.

He had also missed appointments with the probation service on his post prison sentence supervision.

Blackpool Gazette

A prisoner apologised after making loud banging noises from his cell under Blackpool Magistrates’ Court which could be heard in the courtrooms.

Craig Gilroy, 30, of Chesterfield Road, North Shore, pleaded guilty to two offences of theft.

He was sentenced to a six months community order with up to 15 days rehabilitation to be supervised by the probation service, banned from entering Marks and Spencer, Church Street, for six months and ordered to pay £35 compensation with £85 costs plus £85 victims’ surcharge by District Judge Jane Goodwin sitting at Blackpool Magistrates’ Court.

Prosecutor, Andrew Robinson, said Gilroy took a woman’s jacket worth £35 from Marks and Spencer on September 16 at 10.15am.

He was chased but got away.

At midday security officers spotted him and when he was apprehended Gilroy was found to have five jackets valued at £175 from Marks and Spencer which he had stolen just minutes earlier.

Gilroy at the time of the thefts was on licence from prison.

He had a criminal record of 99 previous offences.

Brett Chappell, defending, said his client had stolen from Marks and Spencer because his benefits had not yet been in place and he had been using Spice.

Blackpool Gazette

A MAN has been told to keep his bulldog muzzled after it attacked a spaniel in the Coppergate Centre.

Sam Rogers, prosecuting, said David Tysall and his wife were out shopping with their cocker spaniel Larry when they saw a white and brown dog run up to it, leap on to its back, pin it to the ground and grip the back of its neck.

A group of people, including the attacking dog’s owner, ran up and pulled it off.

Mr Tysall told the owner: “Your dog tried to kill mine.”

Ms Rogers told York magistrates when Mr Tysall said he would phone the police the owner “became quite aggressive towards him, appearing to be drunk. It made the situation worse.”

Andrew John Waterson, of Hardisty Mews, off Leeman Road, York, admitted not keeping his dog under proper control, theft of alcohol, theft of £7.95 of food from the Spar store in Lowther Street on April 8, and obstructing police.

Ms Rogers said in separate incidents on the same day, Waterson had stolen alcohol from the Spar store on Heslington Road and struggled when police arrested him at 9.50pm on Walmgate for aggressive behaviour.

Waterson was ordered to do 12 months’ supervision, including work on controlling his drinking, 100 hours’ unpaid work, to pay £7.95 compensation to the Spar shop in Lowther Street, and to pay £85 prosecution costs. In addition to the muzzle order he was ordered to keep his dog on a lead within the city’s Bar Walls.

His solicitor, Martin Hawes, said Waterson’s dog Tofu had been on a lead in Coppergate Centre on April 27, but it had snapped when it pulled on it.

Tofu was an “Irish breed bull dog”, not a pit bull terrier, and was very good with people. However, it didn’t get on with other dogs. It had not gone for the front of the spaniel’s neck. He had since bought a muzzle for the dog.

Waterson had depression and drank to cope with emotional family issues he was facing. He had a damaged right arm and the police had caused pain when they grabbed it to arrest him.

York Press

Stephanie Todd has been jailed for theft

Stephanie Todd has been jailed for theft

A FORMER Ukip councillor has been jailed for stealing £46,000 from a vulnerable widower in his 90s after she befriended him in the street.

Ex-florist Stephanie Todd, 57, caused suspicion by trying to change Philip Wall’s will to become the main beneficiary when he intended to leave his money to the Cats Protection charity.

The solicitors’ firm that held power of attorney over Todd’s profoundly deaf and occasionally confused victim became suspicious when she tried to switch legal firms, and they called in police.

By that stage she had regularly siphoned off up to £300 a time from cashpoints, carefully staying below the £1,300 a month the former GPO engineer received in his pension.

Judge Stephen Ashurst jailed her for two and a half years and said she was in disgrace.

Mr Wall, from Richmond, North Yorkshire, was a modest, frugal, independent man whose late wife loved cats and made him promise to leave his money to a charity that helped them, the judge said.

The childless victim thought Todd was charitably disposed towards him, and Todd cynically portrayed herself as a “saint” by helping him, the judge said.

Judge Ashurst told her: “You were a forceful woman in your 50s, who exploited that position to exert influence on a very old man.

“He was 98 when he died, knowing that someone who he had trusted had stolen from him.”

Todd and Mr Wall had a chance meeting in August 2013 and she befriended him, swiftly taking over the role of cleaner and helping to look after him.

Shaun Dryden, prosecuting, said: “Essentially she tried to help him following that accidental meeting.

“What becomes clear, in a very short space of time, is that this defendant made every effort to rearrange Mr Wall’s financial affairs.”

She used his bank card to withdraw more than £46,000 from his bank account over three years.

Todd sometimes used the card at night in Darlington and in Oxfordshire – clearly not the actions of an elderly and frail man, the court heard.

He died in February, having seen Todd convicted of theft in December.

Her sentencing was delayed after she had a stroke shortly before the jury came back with a verdict and she now uses a walking frame.

A month before his death, Mr Wall made a victim statement to police, saying: “I trusted Stephanie Todd and I fear she has betrayed that trust by stealing money from me when I was in a vulnerable position.

“Since being told of Stephanie Todd’s actions I have been constantly anxious and I have worried over this daily and I found it difficult to trust people.

“I am 98 and the fact someone has stolen from me has marred the final years of my life.”

Todd, from Shute Road, Catterick Garrison, North Yorkshire, stood as a Ukip candidate in the 2015 General Election, having defected from the Tories in 2013, and was a councillor on Richmondshire District Council.

Simon Perkins, defending, said: “Miss Todd is remorseful for her conduct. She accepts she has thrown away 57 years of good character.”

Northern Echo

A fence who sold thousands of pounds of stolen car stereos on the internet has been jailed for 30 months

A fence who sold thousands of pounds of stolen car stereos on the internet has been jailed for 30 months.

Alan Spence, 37, was a key outlet for thieves targeting vehicles in Tyneside, helping bring misery to scores of motorists.

Spence, who started as a legitimate second hand dealer, stashed the hi-fis at his home and a room he used in another house.

And he even set up his own internet site to trade the hot hi-fis at up to £100 a time, Newcastle Crown Court heard.

Jailing him, Judge Tim Hewitt, said: “It’s clear you were the centre of a conspiracy whereby thieves of car audio systems would come to you to dispose of their ill-gotten gains. It was really on quite a large scale. I conclude very substantial amounts of property passed through your hands.”

Spence, of Dawcett Road, Newcastle, admitted conspiracy to handle stolen goods between December 2000 and January last year.

Police recovered an estimated £30,000 of stolen stereos in twin raids. They found 105 hi-fis and other pieces of audio equipment during a search of Spence’s home in April last year.

Another 45 stereos and 21 fascias were recovered from a room he had rented in a house in the city’s West End.

Mark Styles, defending, said: “This is not a case of him sending people out to commit crime.

“He drifted into the commission of this initially having come into contact with people through his legitimate business as a second hand dealer.”

The Chronicle

From May 2004

Prolific burglar Jacob O’Dell threatened to rape children and chop off a person’s head with an axe.

This is the first picture of a prolific burglar who threatened to rape children and chop off a person’s head with an axe.

Jacob O’Dell, 21, was sentenced for a raft of crimes on Monday (October 9) including charges of using threatening and abusive words to cause harassment, racially related harassment, three burglaries, thefts from cars and shops, attempted theft, criminal damage of his grandmother’s home and driving offences for driving without insurance and not in accordance with a licence.

O’Dell was sentenced for 14 separate offences and given credit for his guilty pleas for all charges.

He was jailed for a total of 30 months in prison, and also given eight penalty points on his driver’s licence.

The court heard that on one occasion O’Dell hurled abuse at a passing cyclist in St Andrew’s Street.

After a confrontation O’Dell shouted: “I’m going to stab you and chop your head off with an axe.”

Jacob O'Dell, who has been sentenced to 30 months for a raft of offences

Jacob O’Dell, who has been sentenced to 30 months for a raft of offences

Whilst in custody in May 2017 O’Dell urinated all over the floor of his cell before threatening to rape supervising officer, PC Tumber’s children, saying: “You f***ing p*ki c**t I’ll rape your kids.

“EDL mate, go back to your own country.”

During sentencing Judge Cooper called the abuse hurled at PC Tumber “vile”.

Mr Snelling, mitigating for the defence, said O’Dell lashed out because he was frustrated at being detained after he joked about concealing drugs.

Mr Snelling said: “Mr O’Dell said he had five Kinder eggs worth of drugs in his rectum, this was a joke he thought would be funny to tell police.

“It was not true.”

On previous occasions O’Dell also threatened to kill a security guard after he was caught attempting to shoplift.

O’Dell was also sentenced for burglary after he smashed his way into a house and stole priceless family heirlooms leaving his victims “feeling sick”.

He also admitted to two other burglaries from 2012.

On another occasion in April 2017, O’Dell barged into his grandmother’s house and demanded to know where his axe was and asked for money.

Worried, his grandmother left her house before getting a phone call from O’Dell to tell her he’d “kicked all the doors in”.

When she returned two of her doors were broken and had been ripped off their hinges.

Mr Snelling said O’Dell committed his crimes to “fit in” and that he is of “limited thinking skills”.

Cambridge News

John Blake has been jailed for six years and four months.

John Blake has been jailed for six years and four months.

A thug who tasered a man in the neck after bursting into a block of flats in Scarborough has been jailed for more than six years.

John Henry Blake, 30, rushed into the building armed with a stun gun disguised as a torch and fired at the 28-year-old victim.

The shocking scenes occurred at a multi-occupancy building for young people with behavioural problems, York Crown Court heard.

Prosecutor David Hall said Blake entered the property with two females, including his teenage niece Ellie-Mae Blake. They banged on the victim’s door.

The victim opened the door “in a cautious way, with his shoulder against it”, said the barrister.

“Ellie-Mae Blake and the other female pushed past him and ran into the hallway, followed by the defendant,” he added.

“He (John Blake) is seen to push an instrument into the neck of (the victim), who recoils against the corner of the door frame and rushes outside the building.

“Just behind (the victim) was a second male. Blake points the implement at this second male in the doorway. The male cowers away fearfully.”

Blake and the two females then rushed upstairs where they tried to force their way into a flat on the second floor, “but the occupants refused to respond”, said Mr Hall.

“Blake is holding the stun gun,” he added. “Ellie-Mae Blake is kicking at the door. The occupants are refusing to come out and this group then leaves.”

Police were called to the building in Victoria Court, off Albemarle Back Road, just after the incident at about 10.50pm on February 6 last year.

The victim told them he had been tasered in the neck but was too fearful to make a complaint. He suffered a “significant red mark” to his neck.

Mr Hall said the attack appeared to stem from a “dispute” between the attackers and a male who lived at the block of flats.

Police arrested Blake at his home in Scarborough but he refused to reveal the whereabouts of the weapon, which was at the home of Blake’s pal Lewis Hardy.

The court heard that Hardy, 19, had been guarding the weapon for Blake but had taken no part in the attack. The torch-shaped stun gun was stamped with the word ‘Police’.

Mr Hall said that Blake, of The Croft, Newby, had dozens of previous convictions for burglaries, theft, criminal damage, violence, fraud and drink-related public disorder. He also had a conviction for a previous firearms offence in 2005, when he was caught in possession of a loaded air rifle and ammunition.

He appeared for sentence for the stun-gun incident on Friday after belatedly pleading guilty to possessing a disguised firearm, assault occasioning actual bodily harm and failing to answer bail by skipping an earlier court hearing, which resulted in him being remanded in custody in October.

His lawyer David Camidge claimed it was not Blake who had originally been in possession of the gun and that his niece Ellie-Mae Blake, 19, had asked for it back “because she was fearful that she wouldn’t be able to get it back to where it had come from”.

Judge Paul Batty QC said John Blake had been the “leading light” in the terrifying incident and slammed him for his shocking criminal record.

He told the defendant: “You Tasered in the neck this young man who refused to make a statement. It doesn’t take a degree of imagination to understand why that is.”

Blake was jailed for six years and four months.

At a previous court hearing, Mr Batty jailed Ellie-Mae Blake, of Edgehill Road, Scarborough, for five years after she admitted possessing a disguised firearm.

Hardy, of Seamer Road, Scarborough, was given an 18-month suspended prison term for a similar offence. A third male was given the minimum five-year jail sentence for firearms possession.

Scarborough News

Dean Thompson, left, and Jamie Welsh have each been jailed for three years.

Dean Thompson, left, and Jamie Welsh have each been jailed for three years.

A pair of robbers who knocked a drunk man to the ground and kicked him in the head have been jailed for three years.

The victim had been enjoying a night out in Newcastle city centre when he started talking to Jamie Welsh and Dean Thompson.

Newcastle Crown Court heard how the pair followed him along the street and grabbed him with such force that he fell to the ground.

While on the floor he was aware his rucksack was being pulled from him by Welsh, 18, and Thompson, 21.

Jenny Haigh, prosecuting, told the court: “Both defendants started to kick him to his head and stand on him.

“He raised his arms to try and protect himself, he felt there was blood running down his face.”

The victim, who lost possessions including a gold iPhone and his wallet and bank cards, managed to get away and went to a bar for assistance.

Tthe items taken from the victim were recovered from the defendants after the attack in August.

Welsh, formerly of Tyneside Foyer, Newcastle, and Thompson, of Westgate Road, Newcastle, pleaded guilty to robbery.

While on bail, Welsh broke into the empty home of a woman diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, and stole an ashtray containing money from a car.

He admitted burglary, theft and criminal damage in connection with those offences.

Barry Robson, defending Welsh, said he’d had to leave home due to his drug taking and had been living on the streets after being asked to leave the Tyneside Foyer.

In relation to the robbery, Mr Robson said: “We are dealing with someone who is 18 and has been coming before the courts since March 2015.

“The situation has gradually got worse.”

Paul Currer, defending Thompson, said: “He’s a young man, he has a learning disability and has problems with his mental health.

“He doesn’t seek to blame others, he’s a very immature 21-year-old, but he understands the seriousness of the offence.”

Recorder William Lowe QC told the pair: “A young man was making his way home after a night out in Newcastle, he had a lot to drink and admitted he was drunk. He was therefore vulnerable.

“He had on his back a rucksack, and a wallet containing credit cards, when he was set upon by these two men.

“He was set to the ground with considerable force. When he was on the ground he was stamped on by these two.

“CCTV was able to capture these two young men and their victim. They were arrested very close to the scene of the offence of robbery.

“They had the items that had been stolen from their victim including the credit cards from his wallet.

“This was in my view a serious offence of robbery.”

Recorder Lowe QC sentenced both Welsh and Thompson to three years in prison.

Sunderland Echo

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