Newport man harrased after falsely accused of assault, court hears

AFTER being "savagely beaten", a Newport man admitted harassing the man he was falsely told was his attacker.

David Eagle, 52, of Ailesbury Street, admitted texting and phoning Robert Collings, telling him "we are coming for you", before visiting his mother's home on Christmas day.

Abergavenny Magistrates' Court heard that Eagle had been at The Bull Inn, Caerleon, for pre-Christmas drinks with his partner and friends on December 22 when he was assaulted.

Defence solicitor Joanne Grace showed magistrates pictures of cuts and swelling around Eagle's left eye and cheek.

She said: "He was savagely beaten, which left him severely distressed, absolutely incensed, ashamed, insulted, destroyed. He could make no sense of it."

She said someone then phoned Eagle the next day, saying "I'm the person who was arrested for assaulting you. It wasn't me, it was Robert Collings. Here's his number."

Ms Grace said Eagle's "judgement was clouded by anger", aggravated by the affect his injuries had on his family at Christmas time.

Prosecutor Tom Roberts said that Mr Collings had been an innocent visitor to The Bull Inn on December 22. He left his friends inside, as he went to wait for a taxi outside the pub.

But, as he waited, Mr Roberts said one of his friends came out, with blood on his face. He was then arrested on suspicion of an alleged assault on Mr Eagle.

He said Eagle made phone calls and sent texts to Mr Collings on December 23, asking for information on the man who assaulted him, before saying things like "I know your address" and "we're coming to get you".

Eagle visited Mr Collings' mother's address on Christmas day, believing it to be his, revving his car's engine outside, pointing at the house and making gestures at his brother.

Chairman of the bench David Rowlands said: "It contained a good degree of provocation, but you went outside the law."

He ordered Eagle to pay a £400 fine, £85 costs, £40 victim surcharge and imposed a 12-month restraining order, stopping him approaching Mr Collings.

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