Judge criticises magistrates’ sentence after karate attack

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A JUDGE spoke of his frustration at being unable to jail a thug who karate kicked a woman in the head in Grantham town centre.

Lithuanian national and karate student Ramunas Gedvila, of Beechcroft Road, Grantham, admitted common assault following the attack in Westgate.

Gedvila, 30, was part of a group outside a town nightclub when he was approached by the victim’s sister who asked for a cigarette. After he handed it over one of the group of men asked for a kiss in return.

The victim shouted back “you have got no chance”, prompting Gedvila to yell “shut up you lesbian Nazi” before attacking.

Jill Derby, prosecuting, said: “She found herself falling backwards and felt a boot impact on her face.”

The victim lost a tooth in the attack and also suffered a cut lip.

Gedvila had admitted the charge at a previous hearing in front of magistrates. District Judge John Stobart criticised those magistrates for playing down the seriousness of the offence. Magistrates were asked to judge the seriousness before sentencing and said it was medium, which Judge Stobart branded “wrong”.

Speaking directly to Gedvila, Judge Stobart said: “You ought to be very thankful to the previous bench of magistrates who thought that a kick to the head of a defenceless woman was a common assault of moderate seriousness.

“It may well be their good fortune that they have not had cases where a kick to the head outside a nightclub has resulted in horrific, permanent injury or death.

“Anyone who goes in with their feet in situations like this can only expect prison.”

Judge Stobart gave Gedvila a suspended prison sentence of three months.

He added: “Ninety days in prison - which is woefully low for this kind of offence - will have to be suspended for 12 months.”

Gedvila was also ordered to pay £60 costs and £50 in compensation.

Judge Stobart added: “It said in the reports that you are a karate student. That should mean that you are able to control your aggression

“If you don’t, prison will be the only estimation.”