Man jailed for violent attack on village green

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A father who kicked and head-butted a man after violence broke out on a village playing field has been jailed at Lincoln Crown Court.

Darren Coupland approached the victim on the field at South Witham and threw a couple of punches.

Hal Ewing, prosecuting, said the two men began to move away from each other before the victim slipped.

Coupland got on top of the victim and repeatedly struck him as friends of the victim told him to stop.

Coupland ignored them and continued the attack going on to head-butt and kick him to the head.

Police were called and when Coupland was arrested he claimed he defended himself after the victim threatened to “smash” him up.

Mr Ewing told the court “Both the defendant and the victim live in the same village. It is a small village where everybody knows other people’s business.

“There is a history of problems between them.

Mr Ewing added that the victim accused Coupland of “being a bully and picking on him”.

Mr Ewing said the victim had previous convictions including for breaches of an anti social behaviour order and at the time of the incident was on police bail following allegations that he had smashed windows at Coupland’s home three months previously. No charges were subsequently brought in relation to that matter.

Coupland, 42, of Great Close, South Witham, admitted assault occasioning actual bodily harm on March 2. He was jailed for six months.

Judge Michael Heath told him: “You cannot behave in this way and retain your liberty.”

Chris Jeyes, defending, said no serious injury had been caused and Coupland pleaded guilty at the first opportunity.

He said Coupland was angry because the incident in which windows were broken had seriously affected his 18-year-old daughter.

Mr Jeyes said Coupland is a hard working man who provides for his family and urged that he should not be jailed immediately.