Tuesday 18 December 2018

Liverpool defender Jon Flanagan avoids jail for assaulting girlfriend

Jon Flanagan has been sentenced at Liverpool Magistrates’ Court to 40 hours of unpaid work and a 12-month community order
Jon Flanagan has been sentenced at Liverpool Magistrates’ Court to 40 hours of unpaid work and a 12-month community order

Eleanor Barlow

Liverpool footballer Jon Flanagan has been sentenced to 40 hours of unpaid work and a 12-month community order for assaulting his girlfriend.

The 25-year-old pleaded guilty at Liverpool Magistrates' Court earlier this month to common assault by beating of Rachael Wall.

The court heard that he kicked his partner in an attack in Duke Street in Liverpool city centre at around 3.20am on Friday December 22.

At the hearing on January 2 he was given unconditional bail and the case was adjourned for a pre-sentence report to be prepared.

District Judge Wendy Lloyd sentenced him on Wednesday to the 12-month community order, which will include 15 rehabilitation activity days, 40 hours of unpaid work, £85 costs and an £85 victim surcharge.

She said: "You are, of course, a young man of previous good character and therefore it's undoubtedly sad that you have brought yourself here by your behaviour."

District Judge Lloyd said the attack was not just a single act.

"It was a matter of this lady going to the floor twice and you used your foot on her on one occasion," she said.

She added: "The lady was seen to have injuries but of course she said she does not attribute those injuries to you."

The court was shown CCTV of the incident, taken from outside the Il Forno restaurant, which showed Flanagan hitting Ms Wall before pushing her against a wall twice and then kicking her.

Alan Currums, prosecuting, said a witness had seen the incident from his flat.

He said: "The witness stated he had seen the male throw the female against the wall and then kick her while she was on the floor."

He said the man saw Flanagan place one hand on his partner's neck and one on her throat before he "slammed her against the wall".

The witness said he shouted from his balcony to Flanagan that he was "out of order" and the footballer replied: "Shut the f**k up dickhead, I'll come and knock you out."

Lionel Greig, mitigating, said the incident was short but unpleasant.

He said Flanagan was not proud of what had happened and had not enjoyed the "negative press intrusion" following it.

He said: "He deeply regrets his behaviour and there is genuine remorse."

Mr Greig said both parties were under the influence of alcohol at the time and there was no suggestion there had been any previous violence in the relationship.

He said: "They are back together and working very hard at the relationship and supporting one another."

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