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Man attacked in smoking shelter at pub
6:00pm Wednesday 11th July 2012 in News
A FORMER soldier who left a man with a broken cheekbone in an unprovoked drunken attack in a pub has walked free from court.
James Phillips was on a suspended sentence for violence when he rained kicks and punches on Philip Hughes during the attack in the smoking shelter at The Abbey Meads.
But after hearing how the 26-year-old’s baby is suffering from a rare condition called Russell-Silver Syndrome, a judge decided not to jail him.
George Threlfall, prosecuting, told Swindon Crown Court how the assault took place on the night of August 6.
“Philip Hughes was in the smoking area having a cigarette, other people were there, when all of a sudden he received a blow to the back of the head,” he said.
The attacker, who he said was a regular at the pub, was then seen by a bar worker to rain a flurry of punches on Mr Hughes.
“Certainly it seems one of the punches Mr Phillips threw connected with Mr Hughes left cheek bone,” he said.
Another man Robert Davies, who was jailed by the court last year, then stepped in and smashed a glass on the victim’s head and he went to the ground.
Phillips was also joined by pal Robert Harris, 26, who also punched the victim before the pair kicked him repeatedly to the body as blood poured from injuries to his face.
Phillips, of Daisy Close and Harris, of Melksham Close, pleaded guilty to unlawful wounding.
The court was told Phillips was put on a 20-week jail term, suspended for two years, in October 2009 meaning it was still in force when he launched the assault.
Rob Ross, for Phillips, said his client had completed the domestic abuse programme part of the sentence but had not properly addressed his drinking.
He said he is the father of a child who has the rare condition which means that the child does not put on weight.
Mr Ross said the predicament has had a profound affect on the man, who has been out of trouble since the August incident, and he is needed by his partner at home.
Kevin Marland, for Harris, said his client had never been in trouble with the police and deeply regrets getting involved in the fracas.
He said he works as a joiner and lives in rented accommodation with his girlfriend, which they would lose if he were jailed.
Passing sentence, Recorder Nicholas Rowland said to Phillips: “Sadly you have a child with an extremely serious medical condition that takes up much of your family time.
“Let me make it clear it is that, and that alone, that keeps you from an immediate custodial sentence. It is a last chance.”
He imposed a one year’s jail term suspended for two years and told them to do 200 hours of community service.
Robert Davies, 26, of Odstock Road, Penhill, was jailed for five-and-a-half years after admitting to wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm.