Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Jail for Thug Who Ruined a Man's Life; Pensioner Was Attacked by Plague on Town

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Jail for Thug Who Ruined a Man's Life; Pensioner Was Attacked by Plague on Town

Article excerpt

Byline: Sara Nichol

AYOUNG thug who plagued a Northumberland town for a almost a decade attacked a vulnerable pensioner on his own doorstep.

Dean Purvis had been arrested 28 times for bringing violence and disorder to the streets of Morpeth before he struck at the home of 77-year-old Maurice Hartill, a court heard.

Purvis, 21, had been at a rowdy house party on Third Avenue, in the town, when he somehow locked himself out and started banging on the font door of neighbours Mr Hartill and his wife at 10.30pm. When the pensioner, who suffered from angina and other health problems, went outside to see what he wanted, drunk Purvis immediately launched his unprovoked attack and punched and kicked him to the ground.

Purvis, who had regularly been in trouble with the police since the age of 12, threw "numerous punches and kicks" before he finally stopped and neighbours called the police, Newcastle Crown Court heard.

When officers arrived, they found Purvis drunk and slumped against a fence with his trousers down, covered in blood. Mr Hartill was taken by ambulance to hospital suffering from grazes to his face but was released a few hours later, only to be re-admitted suffering from chest pains caused by bruising.

The court heard that the attack had severely affected Mr Hartill psychologically, leaving him frightened to leave his own home, depressed, angry and anxious to talk to anyone.

In a statement read to the court, Mr Hartill said: "It's eating me up inside and I can't make it go away."

Now, Purvis, of Second Avenue, Morpeth, has been jailed for 18 months and given a three-year anti-social behaviour order after pleading guilty to assault.

Passing sentence, Judge James Goss said: "The victim suffered significant psychological injuries as a result of this attack. In his own words, he feels like what happened to him has ruined what is left of his life. …

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