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Saturday, 22 November 2014

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Cumbrian man jailed for brutal attack on his own mum

A man who brutally attacked his mother and beat her unconscious has been jailed for three years.

Richard Davy photo
Richard Davy

Audrey McKie thought her son Richard Davy was going to kill her during the savage beating, Carlisle Crown Court heard, and crawled outside her home and screamed at the neighbours for help, before being knocked unconscious for a second time.

Judge Peter Hughes QC condemned the attack, saying Davy, 34, had behaved in a “truly appalling” way towards his own mother.

He also criticised the authorities for only charging him with assault causing actual bodily harm but the Crown Prosecution Service defended the way they dealt with the case.

The court heard how Davy went to live with his mother at Millriggs in Corby Hill when he found himself homeless.

She warned him that he could only live with her if he stopped drinking, otherwise he would be out of the house.

But when she found empty bottles in his bedroom she confronted him and asked him to leave.

He repaid her by attacking her twice, on February 15.

Prosecutor Tim Evans said: “She was concerned about him moving in because of past difficulties – mental health problems and issues with drink and drugs.

“She laid down rules not to drink alcohol under any circumstances otherwise he would be out of the house.

“When she found empty bottles in his bedroom she told him he had to go. There was an argument with them both shouting and the next thing Mrs McKie remembers is lying face down on the floor and he was thumping her over the head. She felt pain in her face and head and when she felt the sore area her hands were wet with blood.

“She immediately wondered what was happening and as she thought that he was continuing to reign blows to her head. She wasn’t sure if they were punches, kicks, or both.

“She thought he was going to kill her. She pulled herself up, crawled across the carpet – terrified that he was going to get to the back door before her. She got outside, looked towards her neighbour’s house and started screaming.

“Her son knocked her unconscious for a second time and kicked her repeatedly. She was asking him to stop.

“Neighbours heard screaming and ran to help. One could see Audrey’s car rocking back and forward from the force of the attack.”

A neighbour, Carol Turner, heard screaming and came to help. In interview she said: “His face was full of hatred and rage and his eyes were huge looking right through me.”

Mrs McKie suffered cuts to her face, head and bruising and swelling. She was taken to hospital.

Mr Evans added: “His mother is utterly heartbroken and feels that she has lost her child. She never believed he would hurt any member of his own family. She will never be able to trust him again.”

Davy, who previously pleaded guilty to assault occasioning actual bodily harm, fractured a bone in his hand during the attack.

Elizabeth Muir, for Davy, said: “My client is not proud of his actions. He is appalled that he inflicted injuries and pain on his mother when she had taken him in at a low point in his life.“He is determined to change his life.”

Sentencing, Judge Peter Hughes QC said: “For a son to treat his mother in this way is truly appalling. She believed at the time that you were going to kill her and you could so easily have done so. I believe you are a dangerous individual who is unpredictable, particularly under the influence of alcohol.”

Davy is also the subject of a restraining order to protect his mother and other family members. He is not allowed to go within 200m of his mother’s home.

At the end of the case the judge criticised the charge – assault occasioning actual bodily harm. He believed wounding with intent would have been more appropriate.

He said: “The charging of this defendant was seriously flawed, in haste and without due consideration. Whether the responsibility lies with Cumbria police or the Crown Prosecution Service or simple error or consequence is not for me to say.

“Crimes of violence in Cumbria are not being appropriately charged.”

Judge Hughes said he would be writing to the chief constable and the CPS to voice his concerns.

A spokeswoman for Cumbria police told the News & Star all charges were set by the CPS.

Jonathan Storer, branch Crown prosecutor for the CPS, said: “I am satisfied that the evidence in this case was given serious and proper consideration and all the relevant guidelines were taken into account before a decision to charge the defendant with assault occasioning actual bodily harm was taken.

“The defendant is now beginning a significant prison sentence as a result of this conviction.

“We take cases of violence and assault very seriously and have clear guidelines for charging and prosecuting these cases.

“However, I am aware that the judge has expressed concern about the charge in the case, and we will give his honour’s comments serious consideration.”

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