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Defence brands thug 'a complete idiot' in Brighton assault trial
8:10am Friday 25th May 2012 in News
A thug who punched a holidaymaker got more than he bargained for when an onlooker beat him with a hammer.
Mark Molloy, 32, was spared jail after his own barrister branded him “a complete idiot”.
After punching a man, smashing a window and pulling a knife, he suffered a beating from someone who had tried to restrain him.
He was sentenced for affray, two assaults and criminal damage at Hove Crown Court on Wednesday, May 23.
Molloy, of Lower Rock Gardens, Brighton, approached a couple in St James's Street on February 13 this year.
The pair, both teachers, were celebrating a birthday by visiting the city and were on their way to the Four Seasons Guest House in Upper Rock Gardens.
In my submission, without being disrespectful to the defendant, he is a complete idiotWilliam England, defending
He became angry when they ignored him because they thought he was begging.
When he followed them up the road they went into a shop and asked for the police to be called.
Molloy walked in and punched the man on the head.
The shopkeeper and a customer bundled him out of the shop, but he came back, pulled a knife out of his bag and smashed the window of the shop door.
The customer who had restrained him picked up a hammer from the shop and went outside to confront Molloy.
After a stand-off the customer hit Molloy with the hammer, then knocked him to the ground and kicked him.
Judge Shani Barnes said: “You ended up getting more than you bargained for.”
William England, defending, said: “In my submission, without being disrespectful to the defendant, he is a complete idiot.”
Judge Barnes told Molloy: “I am furious that people cannot come to Brighton and have a perfectly pleasant weekend without being assaulted and terrorised.”
She gave him a suspended seven-month jail sentence and ordered him to go through an intensive drug rehabilitation course.
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