Cleveleys man beat his sibling with glass jar in row over caring for pet dogs

A sex offender suffered a cut to her head when she was glassed by her brother in a row about the dogs they both care for.

Monday, 5th July 2021, 3:45 pm

Preston Sessions House Court was told Hugh Holt, 55, of Norbreck Road, who has a "volatile" relationship with his sibling, had referred to her past when police came to arrest him.

Victim Selena Harling, 54, was convicted of sexual offences when she was known as Charles Raymond Holt.

She claims her brother acted in a transphobic fashion because he could not accept her new identity - but the court rejected this.

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rosecutors said an argument broke out at their address about the animals, during which Holt was "abusive and threatening".

Nothing else happened until later in the day, when Miss Harling had been out with friends and arrived home at around 10pm to find her brother in her flat.

Karen Brooks, prosecuting, said: " The defendant was sitting on a sofa and when she asked him to leave he became abusive. There was some kind of struggle. She ran to a rear bedroom to retrieve her phone."

The court heard initial contact was made with the police but Holt then punched her from the bed to the floor and another struggle broke out.

The complainant went into the lounge and asked him to leave, but Holt picked up a glass jar filled with screws from the bedside cabinet and hit her on the head, causing a cut.

Miss Brooks added: "She was dazed and in pain. The victim walked into the kitchen and there was then some further struggle.

"He left just before the police arrived."

In a victim statement, Harling claimed her brother was motivated by her transgender female identity, claiming he is not comfortable with it and calls her homophobic terms

On his arrest Holt, who has 16 convictions for 39 offences, told officers: "He's not had a sex change.

"He's a van driver, he has a penis and balls.

"He's not a woman and he's on the sex offender's register.

In an interview Holt denied the assault, claimed she headbutted him first and said the argument was about how he perceives the victim to treat the dogs.

Defending, Rachael Woods said: " This was effectively a volatile relationship. The police have been called out on both sides on a number of occasions.

"The defendant accepts he reacted in a criminal fashion and was responsible for the injuries the complainant sustained.

"He has been in custody for five months and three weeks - the equivalent of a 10 month jail sentence."

Recorder Daniel Prowse accepted Holt made "unpleasant and backward comments" but was not satisfied it was a transphobic offence.

Imposing nine and a half months - meaning Holt's immediate release on licence - he said: " There is a statement from you sister and that relates to police speaking to her following comments you made.

"You called her a paedophile and I'm told - and this is solely for the accuracy of that assertion - that she is on the sex offender's register I make clear I don't bear that in mind as to whether she deserved this because plainly she did not.

"However I cannot be sure to the criminal standard that this offence was motivated by any hatred towards her because of her transgender identity, in fact the evidence is it seems to be motivated by her ability to care for the dogs.

He imposed a five year restraining order.

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