One punch attack yob sent to prison

Michael Townley

Michael Townley

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A MAN who fractured a reveller’s skull in a one-punch attack has been jailed.

Preston Crown Court heard how Michael Townley attacked 48-year-old Stephen Buckley after he saw him kissing his mother at an address on Broomfield Road, Fleetwood where a 21st birthday party was being held.

Mr Buckley suffered fractures to the base of his skull and a fractured right ear bone in the assault but has since recovered from his injuries.

The court was told how Townley punched him once to the face in the incident last May and a woman passing by heard a “loud and terrible thud” as he fell backwards to the ground.

The 25-year-old defendant, of Clifford Street, Chorley had pleaded guilty to inflicting grievous bodily harm.

Paul Brookwell, prosecuting, said Mr Buckley, a self employed electrician, knew people at the party, joined in drinking and gave some money as a birthday present.

He later left the address to go elsewhere, but did not remember anymore.

He could only remember waking up in hospital around three weeks later on June 16.

In his basis of plea, Townley and other family members were said to have been incensed by Mr Buckley kissing the defendant’s mum. Mr Buckley was married to her sister.

A row followed, with the defendant trying to move his mother away from Mr Buckley. The basis of plea also suggested Mr Buckley had kept following Townley and his mum Sharon, so the defendant finally lashed out.

It appears Mr Buckley has now made a good recovery, but has an ongoing issue with his sodium levels, for which he has been taking tablets.

Waheed Omran-Baber, defending, said Townley had initially separated the mother and Mr Buckley after the kiss. It then seemed they would kiss again.

Mr Omran-Baber added: “It was a single punch, the consequences of which he never intended and certainly didn’t forsee. He accepts full responsibility for his actions. He is certainly sorry for what he has done.

“As far as is possible, he wants to apologise to him and to amend his ways. He is on the road to redemption”.

Jailing Townley for two and a half years, Judge Michael Byrne said it was about the ninth case he had dealt with this week for violence in the street, fuelled by alcohol, where serious injury was caused.

He added “Sadly, yet again, this case is another example of the link between drinking and violent behaviour.”

Speaking after sentencing, Det Con Andy Simpson, of Wyre CID, said: “The level of force used in this attack knocked the victim to the floor and caused him serious injuries. Thankfully he has since recovered, but the blow could have proved fatal.”

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