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10 February 2011, 16:16
A victim who was struck twice on the head with a dumbbell bar needed 17 stitches to two wounds, a court has heard.
The man who inflicted the blows, 24 year old Joe Rowson, was today (Thursday February 10th) jailed for 30 months at Luton Crown Court.
Rowson, of Thirsk Road, Borehamwood had been convicted by a jury at St. Albans Crown Court last month of malicious wounding. He had been cleared of the more serious charge of wounding with intent. He had pleaded not guilty to both charges.
The jury heard how on Aug 8 last year he was on the balcony of a second floor flat in Thirsk Road, apparently arguing with his girlfriend which attracted the attention of people down in the street, including the victim Paul Cussell.
The girlfriend went down and spoke with them because they were concerned for her welfare.
Judge Marie Catterson said: "The defendant saw the exchange, picked up the metal dumbbell bar and descended two flights of stairs at speed and run at Mr. Cussell who was walking away from him. He immediately struck him on the head with the bar, not just once but twice.
"He was knocked to the ground and was bleeding badly and apparently unconscious."
The Judge said he had two wounds, one above his eye and one in his hairline. He needed 17 stitches and has been left with a scar.
She said Rowson had been in court on 15 previous occasions, which included ten convictions for common assault in domestic situations.
Nicola Cafferkey, defending said: "He has now taken full responsibility for his actions and has realised that the victim and witnesses must have been distraught at his behaviour that day.
"He has not tried to justify what he did and has demonstrated considerable remorse."
She urged the court to consider suspending the sentence.
But Judge Catterson said immediate custody was inevitable.