A VIOLENT drunk who smashed a wine bottle over a woman’s head in front of horrified onlookers has been jailed.
The savage attack was aggravated, said the judge, because it happened in Newbury’s Victoria Park and was witnessed by families out for an afternoon stroll.
Thirty-one-year-old Dean Boness, of Ewing Way, Newbury, had denied assaulting Marianne Jane Grey, causing her grievous bodily harm.
But, following a trial, jurors took just 52 minutes to unanimously convict him.
He also denied assaulting Nigel Mallie by beating him on the same occasion and was acquitted of this charge.
Jurors heard how Boness got into an altercation with Ms Grey and Mr Mallie around 5pm on August 1 last year, which ended with him smashing the bottle over her head.
Members of the public rushed to help, the court heard, and Ms Grey was taken to hospital where doctors had to stitch the gaping wound.
At a sentencing hearing at Reading Crown Court on Friday, January 26, Steve Molloy, mitigating for Boness, said: “This was a single blow, albeit with the use of a bottle.
“The complainant admitted quite readily she had launched an attack on my client.
“She was quite candid about the fact she attacked him because she was angry.”
He said Boness had been drinking during the day in question, and added: “He believed at the time his drink may have been spiked – hence his lack of memory and the fact that he didn’t give evidence.
“I’ve represented Mr Boness on a number of occasions and it’s clear to me that the root cause of his offending is a long-standing problem with alcohol.”
The court heard that Boness is currently serving a prison sentence for assault causing actual bodily harm.
Mr Molloy said: “While in custody, he has taken part in an alcohol detox programme.
“It appears he has since become a model prisoner.
“He has been appointed a [prison] wing representative, the person to whom other prisoners turn.
“He is effectively the MP for his wing, if I can put it that way.”
He added: “It’s a role given to him because of his trustworthiness.
“He is now on good terms with the mother of his children and is generally a nicer person when he’s not in drink.”
Judge Ian Grainger told Boness: “Although you were under attack by Ms Grey, you reacted disproportionately.
“I will therefore treat this as a case of excessive self-defence.
“Aggravating features include your previous convictions and the fact this was a public park in the late afternoon where ordinary members of the public were present.”
He added: “You were abusive, of course, and in serious drink.
“You have two convictions for public violence, two convictions for assault on police following a trial and battery of a security guard.
“You’ve been given repeated suspended sentence orders and are currently serving 17 months for assault occasioning actual bodily harm involving punching and kicking to the head.”
Judge Grainger told Boness he was lucky that Ms Grey’s injuries were not more serious.
He sentenced him to 12 months imprisonment, to be served consecutive to the current 17- month sentence, bringing Boness’ total jail term to 29 months.
Boness was also ordered to pay a statutory victim services surcharge of £140.