December 5 2013 Latest news:
Wednesday, August 14, 2013
A landowner who armed himself with a wrench and threatened a dog walker during a row over a public footpath has been found guilty of having an offensive weapon.
Edward Wiseman chased after Michael Read after his wife told him Mr Read had threatened to come back with a shotgun and use it if they did not keep their dog and geese under control while he was using a footpath on their land, Ipswich Crown Court heard.
Wiseman had driven along Lower Road, Westerfield, after Mr Read at around 10am on February 9 this year and after stopping his car had threatened Mr Read with the wrench which had been in a pocket in his driver’s door.
During the incident both men had gone to the ground and Mr Read had ended up on top of Mr Wiseman.
Several drivers had stopped to see what was going on and described Wiseman as being armed with a monkey wrench and being the aggressor.
The court heard Wiseman was disarmed during the incident and before leaving the scene had asked a van driver if he could have the wrench back. The driver refused and had given the wrench to Mr Read in case he needed it as evidence, the court heard.
Wiseman, 57, of Lower Road, Westerfield, denied having an offensive weapon and affray. He was found guilty of having an offensive weapon and the jury was discharged from returning a verdict on the other charge.
Sentence was adjourned until August 20 for a pre-sentence report.
Giving evidence Wiseman said he had gone after Mr Read to take his picture after he threatened his family and claimed that Mr Read had produced the wrench and raised it as if to take a swing at him.
Asked by his barrister Richard Wood if he had used or threatened violence to Mr Read, Wiseman replied; “Absolutely not. I didn’t make any threats of violence. I was the person on the floor and I was the person that was attacked.”