Aston allotment thug fails in jail term cut bid

By Michael Upton | 26/02/2018

Aston allotment thug fails in jail term cut bid

A DISABLED thug involved in an attack on an allotment holder has failed to persuade Britain's top judge to cut his jail term.

James Leslie Penistone (39), along with two teenagers, chased the victim off his plot at allotments in Swallownest.

The man was then attacked with a length of wood as he sought refuge in the driveway of a nearby house.

He was also hit with a “makeshift weapon” by one of the teenagers during the “revenge” attack in September 2016, London’s Appeal Court heard.

The attack was motivated by the victim having reported one of the teenagers to the police.
Threats were also issued that the allotment-holder’s sheds and outbuildings were “going up”.

Penistone, of Arcubus Avenue, Aston, was jailed for 14 months at Sheffield Crown Court last December after admitting affray and threatening to destroy or damage property.

The Lord Chief Justice, Lord Burnett, last Tuesday heard his lawyers argue he was treated too harshly.

The judge, sitting with Mr Justice Nicol and Mr Justice William Davis, said Penistone was “physically disabled and has psychological and learning limitations”.

He had received a jail term, whereas the two teenagers who were with him had escaped custody, the court heard.

Penistone’s lawyers argued that, in light of his personal problems and the “disparity” between his sentence and those imposed on the two teenagers, Penistone’s jail term ought to be cut.

It was said that “a right-thinking member of the public” would be confused as to why he was locked up while the teenagers walked free.

But Lord Burnett dismissed Penistone's appeal, saying: “This was group violence, by men who had armed themselves with makeshift weapons. 

“They chased their victim and the incident only came to an end because other people intervened.
“The violence was perpetrated as revenge against somebody who had done nothing more than report a crime.

“This was a serious affray and one which attracted a properly significant custodial sentence.

“In circumstances where the two co-accused were very young, and he was a fully grown adult, a right-thinking member of the public would understand very well why the sentence was imposed.”

The judge concluded: “This appeal is dismissed.”

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