CCTV footage lost in Chatburn man’s assault case

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A charge of assault occasioning actual bodily harm against a 29-year-old Chatburn man has been dropped after the prosecution reported vital CCTV footage had been lost.

A district judge had ordered the police officer in the case to attend court after prosecutor Miss Catherine Allan reported repeated requests for the evidence had not met with success.

Mr Gareth Price (defending) told the earlier hearing his client, Gary David Place, had seen the CCTV footage and accepted there had been an assault.

But he said, without seeing the CCTV footage or medical evidence, he was unable to advise his client on the charge of actual bodily harm.

A lesser charge of common assault was laid and Mr Price entered a guilty plea on behalf of his client, whose attendance at court had been excused.

The court heard that Place, of Pendle Avenue, Chatburn, assaulted John Whittaker after a chance meeting in a beer garden. There was a history between them, but they hadn’t seen each other in six or seven years.

“There was a row and a single punch assault and it is accepted the aggrieved lost consciousness for a short period of time,” said Mr Price.