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Keighley man jailed for fracturing jaw of RAF flyer
7:00am Saturday 9th March 2013 in Keighley
A 23-year-old Keighley man has been jailed for 18 months for fracturing an RAF serviceman’s jaw after he made fun of his customised vehicle.
Anthony Lee approached Reece Barnes with a large iron bar and struck him in the face with his fist at 2am in Bingley Main Street, Bradford Crown Court heard.
Lee, of Coronation Way, was on bail for badger baiting when he attacked Mr Barnes on April 9 last year. He was jailed for 23 weeks by Bradford and Keighley magistrates the following month for animal cruelty.
Lee pleaded guilty to unlawfully wounding Mr Barnes, who needed surgery to reconstruct a double fracture of his jaw.
Prosecutor Conor Quinn said last Thursday Lee had previous convictions for assault, attempted robbery and battery. CCTV footage of him approaching Mr Barnes and hitting him was shown in court.
A victim statement from Mr Barnes said he spent three days in hospital and had lost two stone since the attack.
He was off work for four months because he was unfit for flying duties, and he had difficulty eating and sleeping.
Lee’s barrister, Stephen Wood, said he hit Mr Barnes once and the victim looked set to make a full recovery.
He and his friend were rude about Lee’s customised vehicle and called him “a weirdo”. Lee had a stable home life with no drug or alcohol issues. He expected to go to prison and he was ready to serve his sentence.
Judge Peter Benson said Lee’s response to Mr Barnes’ comment about his vehicle was “wholly and completely disproportionate”.
“You armed yourself with an iron bar and walked towards two young men, at the head of a group, and struck one in the face with your fist causing a double jaw fracture needing an operation to put in a titanium plate,” the judge added.