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Eye plumber cleared of assault and driving offence

PUBLISHED: 17:03 14 February 2018

Ipswich Crown Court. Picture: SIMON PARKER

Ipswich Crown Court. Picture: SIMON PARKER

Archant

A Suffolk plumber accused of punching and kicking a man before driving at him with such force that he ended up in a ditch has been cleared by a jury.

Before Ipswich Crown Court was Guy Clements, 55, of Worlingworth Road, Athelington, Eye, who had denied assaulting Simon Farmer causing him actual bodily harm and dangerous driving in January last year.

He was unanimously cleared of both charges by a jury after a three day trial.

During the trial the court heard that Mr Farmer, who lives in Lower Hacheston, was waiting to reverse his people carrier into his drive when he became aware of a van driven by Clements behind him.

Oncoming traffic meant Clements was held up and when he overtook Mr Farmer, Clements had allegedly gesticulated at him before punching him in the face.

Clements got back in his van and thinking he was going to drive off Mr Farmer had stood in front of the van and was allegedly knocked into a ditch.

The court heard that as a result of the alleged incident Mr Farmer suffered swelling and a cut to his lip, bruising over his eyebrow and a cut to his finger.

Giving evidence Clements claimed Mr Farmer had tried to attack him and he had acted to protect himself and his partner, who was a passenger in his van.

He accused Mr Farmer of “screaming and growling like an animal” during the incident and claimed that at one point Mr Farmer had stood in the middle of the road like “The Hulk”.

He described Mr Farmer as being “completely unhinged” and claimed he had wrenched open the passenger door of his van “like a madman”.

Clements said his fiancée, who was in the passenger seat, had been upset and he had got out of the van and barged at Mr Farmer to get him away from the van.

He claimed Mr Farmer had swung punches at him and he had punched Mr Farmer three times to defend himself.

Clements said as he tried to drive away Mr Farmer had run out in front of him and clawed at the windscreen.

Clements lurched his van forward 18 inches and when Mr Farmer stumbled he took the opportunity to get away.

He denied deliberately driving at Mr Farmer.

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