Devon thug jailed for unprovoked horror attack

Michael Holland has been jailed for ABH
Michael Holland has been jailed for ABH -Credit:Devon & Cornwall Police

A thug has been jailed for an unprovoked attack on a man in the middle of a Devon town. Michael Holland delivered a flurry of punches to his victim who was standing by the Jubilee monument in Axminster.

After knocking him to the ground he stood over the man and shouted abuse before turning his aggression on members of the public who witnessed the assault.

Holland, 30, has a history of violence and appeared at Exeter Crown Court to be sentenced for assault causing actual bodily harm. He was jailed for 15 months.

The judge said: "Without warning or provocation you assaulted him, punching him repeatedly to the face and head. You delivered quite a strong blow with your knee to his face and he fell unconscious."

The incident happened on December 11 at about 6pm. CCTV showed the victim waiting for a friend when a man he knew as Mikey and considered a friend approached. They had a friendly exchanged and Holland walked away.

But a moment later he returned and without warning started to punch the victim. The victim said he fell unconscious under the barrage. Holland then strode over to members of the public with his arms out in an aggressive way before leaving.

The victim spent a few days in hospital suffering from injuries to his face and eye. He is now worried about going into the town centre and fears seeing his attacker again.

Holland, of Langford Avenue, Honiton, has 20 previous crimes to his name. They include battery, affray and ABH. His latest offence was in breach of a suspended sentence.

The court was told he has anger issues, anxiety, depression and drug addictions. He had recently split from his partner and said the man owed him money.

Judge David Evans said it was an "inexplicable offence".

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