Fractured jaw costs West Bay man $13,000

| 01/05/2012

(CNS): A 52-year-old man from West Bay who was found guilty of fracturing a man’s jaw during an altercation in a West Bay yard received a 12 month suspended sentence on Friday and was ordered to pay more than $13,000 to compensate the victim for medical expenses and loss of earnings. Owen Smith was found guilty of inflicting grievous bodily harm on Jeremy Manderson, who had been his friend for over thirty years.  Although the court heard that the injury inflicted by Smith was considered serious, there were mitigating factors that the judge took into account that led to Smith being saved from jail.

The fact that Smith had no convictions for violent offences for many years, that he was alcohol and drug free and that he employs ten people in a small business were combined with other circumstances to save him from being sent to jail. The court heard that a significant number of family members depend on Smith and that he is active in the community helping the homeless. Finally, the victim had also expressed a desire not to see his former friend go to jail but had requested compensation for his injury, which doctors said may leave him with permanent problems.

The court heard that Smith had hauled his victim from a chair and kicked and punched him in a moment of anger, breaking the man’s jaw during the fight. However, senior prosecuting counsel Trevor Ward admitted that the incident was not pre-planned and he did not use a weapon. His defence counsel Lucy Organ noted how out of character it was for Smith to behave this way and that it was an isolated incident.

Although Smith had said at trial he did not believe his actions could have caused his former friend’s injury, which was why he pleaded not guilty, he did say he was sorry that Manderson had been hurt and was willing to pay the compensation.

Justice Harrison said the injury inflicted on the victim was sufficiently serious to attract a jail term but he opted to suspend the twelve month sentence because of the mitigating factors, as he warned Smith to “keep far from problems and troubles” while the sentence was suspended for one year, otherwise he could still serve the full twelve months. The judge ordered Smith to attend an anger management course in the community and to pay back CI$13,097 to the man he injured.

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Category: Crime

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Violent acts like this should come with MANDATORY JAIL TIME. 5 years in Northward for the first offense. 10 Years for the next.

    That will wake people up!

    Not some pishy poshy fine. JAIL TIME!


  2. Anonymous says:

    cool…broken jaw = no jail time!

  3. Anonymous says:

    ouch! and ouch!