Friday, March 06, 2009

Conservative Councillor punched neighbour

A Tory councillor allegedly punched his neighbour in a longstanding feud.

Geraint Jones lost his temper and stormed up to the man "screaming and shouting", before punching him in the head, a court heard.

Hinckley Magistrates' Court was told the men had been arguing for years about neighbour Anthony Harrison having access to his home across Jones's property.

The argument flared when Mr Harrison walked across Jones's property to unload bags of granite chippings outside his home.

He said Jones hurled verbal abuse, then traced him to a nearby house where he was working and hit him.

Jones (61), a North West Leicestershire District councillor, denies assault.

Mr Harrison, a 47-year-old roofer who lives next door to him in Tamworth Road, Ashby, said the punch was thrown two hours later, as he worked at a house in Nottingham Road.

He admitted they had fought before, and that he had beaten up Jones while defending himself in the past.

On this occasion, he said the punch came out of the blue.

He said: "I saw Jones charging down the entryway saying words along the lines of 'What the hell is going on here?'.

"I went to block his path, saying something like 'Get away from this job'.

Mr Harrison said Jones then used abusive language.

"I stood in front of him and he tried to barge past me. He carried on using vulgar language," Mr Harrison told the court.

"Because I wouldn't let him past, he swung a punch. It stung me. I was shocked by the whole incident."

During the earlier incident outside their homes, Mr Harrison said Jones had stood on the other side of a gate "shouting obscenities at me".

The court was told the altercation happened on June 11.

Mr Harrison said in 1996 Jones had attacked him but ended up getting "the worst of it".

The trial is to continue at a later date.


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