Dad spared prison after attack at a party at Gosport’s Thorngate Hall

Taxi driver assaulted by youth with knife in Southsea

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A DAD who attacked two men – knocking one out in separate incidents at the same party – has been spared jail.

Lawrence Scott set upon his first victim at a prize-giving evening, believing the man had spilt beer on his shirt.

A second man spotted Scott throwing punches at Thorngate Hall in Bury Road, Gosport, shortly after 11pm and intervened.

Lawrence then left, but later knocked the second man out with a single punch outside the hall, leaving him needing seven stitches to a cut above his eyebrow.

Prosecutor Peter Spink said: ‘It seems that the incident had been over the fact that the defendant was upset that earlier on in the evening some beer had been spilt on his shirt.

‘Shortly after the incident the second man went outside to see if his taxi had arrived.

‘He remembers the defendant coming towards him. The next thing he remembers is waking up at Queen Alexandra Hospital.

‘He had in fact been punched by the defendant and punched hard, knocking him to the ground and causing him to lose consciousness.’

Scott, 20, of Cochrane Close, Rowner, Gosport, admitted one count of assault by beating and one of affray on May 14 last year.

Portsmouth Crown Court heard that he had knocked the second man out after the victim had run towards the taxi with Scott and his children inside.

A witness said she saw Scott get out of the taxi and hit him.

Daniel Reilly, defending, said Scott was sorry for his actions.

He said: ‘Mr Scott’s error, rather than at least attempting to take avoiding action by closing the door of the taxi, was to stand up and meet the challenge head on.

‘He met it by way of a single punch. It’s undoubtedly unfortunate that an injury was sustained.’

At sentencing, Recorder Michael Hubbard QC said he was close to being sent to jail.

‘You are fairly close to going into custody but you are not,’ he said.

‘I’m going to make a community order because in my judgment these two offences are sufficiently serious to warrant that order, but you must understand that if you commit further offences or breach the terms of the order I’m about to make then you will come back her and go down instead, I have no doubt.’

Scott was given an 18-month community order under supervision stating he must attend at Thinking Skills Programme.