Baseball bat attacker spared prison

PUBLISHED: 13:07 17 March 2008 | UPDATED: 21:15 26 October 2009

A FORMER squaddie who attacked a man with an aluminium baseball bat during a New Year's Eve party has escaped jail. Victim Sam Smith stropped out of St Albans Crown Court when Judge John Plumstead told Anthony Edwards he would not go to jail. Mr Smith wan

A FORMER squaddie who attacked a man with an aluminium baseball bat during a New Year's Eve party has escaped jail.

Victim Sam Smith stropped out of St Albans Crown Court when Judge John Plumstead told Anthony Edwards he would not go to jail.

Mr Smith wanted to leave a party at Edwards' home on December 31, 2006, after a fight with his girlfriend.

As he left Edwards' partner Vicky Morgan followed him to see if she could placate him, but an argument began.

Edwards, 45, believed Vicky was in trouble and grabbed a baseball bat by the front door.

He hit Mr Smith several times as he was on the floor and also struck Vicky as she tried to protect him, causing blood to gush everywhere.

Prosecutor Ian Wade told the court: "She took blows to her arms and Mr Smith took a nasty blow to the head that needed eight stitches."

Defence barrister Anthony Lenaghan said Edwards, who had served his country for 15 years, had lost his relationship with Vicky Morgan due to the attack.

Judge Plumstead told Edwards: "I should be locking you up but I ask myself what purpose would that serve?"

Hearing this announcement, Mr Smith stormed from the court, shouting: "Call this justice? I call it f***ing rubbish."

Judge Plumstead continued: "If I were him I would want revenge too, but justice and revenge are not the same thing."

Edwards, of Robins Way, Hatfield, was sentenced to a three-year community order with 100 hours unpaid work.

He was also banned from licensed pubs and restaurants for six months and must pay £500 compensation.


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