W. J. Bailhache, Q.C., Deputy Bailiff, and Jurats Le Cornu and Liston.
The Attorney General
Richard Alan Wavell
Sentencing by the Inferior Number of the Royal Court following a guilty plea to the following charge:
1 count of:
Grave and criminal assault (Count 1).
Details of Offence:
Wavell made contact with the 16-year-old victim through Facebook, using an account in a fake name. He invited the victim to his flat in order to buy a PS3 controller from him. When the victim arrived the flat was in darkness as the curtains were closed. The victim sat down, but became restless as Wavell appeared to search for his money. The Victim began to pace and made a phone call, but Wavell asked him to sit down. As he did so the Victim saw a sheet had been placed over the back of the chair. Wavell threw this over his head and then struck him on the head with the base of a plastic bottle. The Victim felt a sharp pain, removed the sheet and stood to face Wavell. He was shocked and scared and tried to leave the flat, but Wavell blocked his way and locked the front door. The Victim dialled 999 on his mobile telephone, but did not connect the call. He showed Wavell the number on the phone's screen and Wavell let him out. As the Victim left, Wavell called: "Don't tell, don't tell".
Wavell gave a no comment interview.
He was assessed as being at high risk of reconviction and a significant risk of further violence.
Details of Mitigation:
Guilty plea. The hearing was adjourned to investigate the possibility of a specialist placement, but funding was not granted. A package of local support was put together.
Four, three for factually similar common assaults involving the covering of the victim's head with cloth.
18 months' imprisonment.
Sentence and Observations of Court:
240 hours' community service order, or 18 months' imprisonment in default, and a 2 year probation order.
Ms. S. J. O'Donnell, Crown Advocate.
Advocate J. W. R. Bell for the Defendant.
THE DEPUTY BAILIFF:
1. You are here to be sentenced on a count of grave and criminal assault. That is a serious criminal offence that you have committed. You invited a young man to come to your address, you threw a blanket over his head and you hit him with a plastic bottle.
2. It is not the first time that you have thrown a blanket, or an equivalent, over somebody's head and assaulted them. That is behaviour that you need to tackle because it will get you into very serious trouble. That young man was very frightened and the law is to protect people.
3. We have given a lot of thought to what is the right sentence to impose in your case. The offence you have committed means that you deserve to go to prison. On this occasion we are not going to send you to prison because, for your protection and the protection of others, we think it is right that you be placed on probation with this very rigorous approach that the probation officer has recommended. But you must realise that it could easily be prison and if you do not perform the terms of the probation service orders they will bring you back here and you will be sent to prison. You must understand that.
4. Because of the seriousness of the offence and the assault on the victim we are also going to impose a community service order and that you will have to do over what will be quite a protracted period of time because there are a lot of hours of community service.
5. On this Indictment you are sentenced to 240 hours' community service, the alternative would be 18 months' imprisonment, and you are placed on probation for a period of 2 years. The Probation Order will have all the usual conditions which are attached but in addition will contain these conditions:-
(i) Unless you have the written consent of the probation officer you are not permitted to have any visitor under the age of 18 at your home alone;
(ii) You must attend upon and engage with such psychologists as the probation officer directs, so when you are told to attend on the psychologist you go and you cooperate with him or her; and
(iii) You should reside and sleep only where approved by your supervising probation officer.
You are required to attend, of course, any other courses which the probation officer tells you, you must attend.
6. Be aware that this is a serious offence and if you do not perform according to the probation officer's directions, or if you do not do your community service, you will be brought back to this Court and then you can be sentenced again and it is very likely that that means prison.