Welshpool taxi driver punched partner in front of young boy


Jonny Drury

A taxi driver broke his partner’s eye socket when he punched her in front of a young boy at their home in Welshpool.

Martin Leader attacked Rachel Davies in Welshpool and the court was told she felt bullied and threatened before reporting the incident to the police.

On Tuesday, Leader, 42, appeared at Caernarfon Crown Court, where he was given a 10 month suspended jail term.

He had pleaded guilty to causing grievous bodily harm and Judge Huw Rees told the court: “You are not a bad man.

“You are not a violent man. You did something completely wrong.”

He must do 150 hours of unpaid work and a rehabilitation activity. In addition, Leader, now of Bolton, has to pay £535 costs.

Prosecutor James Coutts said the couple had “petty” rows on the day.

 The victim told Leader to leave a bedroom and pushed him. But he hit her in the face, catching the right eye, and the child had been crying and screaming.

“It seems, rather unfortunately, the defendant’s family essentially blamed her,” Mr Coutts remarked.

Miss Davies went to hospital at Shrewsbury and had small fractures, her sight was blurred and she had headaches.

At first she did not report the assault to the police, as she relied financially on the defendant.

She felt “bullied and “threatened”.

Mr Coutts added that the case involved a single blow and an unpleasant incident in front of a child. It did not appear there had been any corrective surgery.

Clare Jones, defending, said the offence happened more than a year ago.

According to Leader, the relationship was “volatile”, particularly on the day in question.

“Immediately prior to the punch the complainant pushed the defendant which he says was ‘forceful’,” the barrister said.

He was “provoked” but realised it did not justify his response.

Miss Jones said Leader would lose his taxi driver’s licence.

Judge Rees told him: “By hitting a woman you degraded yourself. You are a father and, I accept, a caring father.”

He said, luckily for Leader, no corrective surgery was needed to a broken eye-socket.

Judge Rees said Leader had an earlier caution for battery involving a former partner.

He accepted that the defendant was remorseful.

But about the GBH, the judge added: “For the little boy this would have been a frightening experience. He might live with that memory for years to come.”

See full story in the County Times

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