Drunk thug told taxi driver, 62, 'I'll end you' before lashing out with broken bottle

Craig Davies, formerly of Elizabeth Street, Burnley
Craig Davies, formerly of Elizabeth Street, Burnley -Credit:Merseyside police

A taxi driver was "traumatised" after being slashed in the face with a broken wine bottle by a drunk bully.

Craig Davies, 39, attacked Michael Kessler, 62, after he refused to let him into his car at Liverpool Lime Street Station at around 8am on August 16 2022. Davies, who was visibly intoxicated and holding a bottle of wine, then shouted "I'm getting in, you baldy c**t", and repeatedly headbutted the window of the cab.

At Liverpool Crown Court on Monday, April 22, prosecutor Zahra Baqri said: "Such was the force that the taxi driver was concerned that the defendant may smash the window, and so he got out of his vehicle. He told police that what happened next was blurry as it all happened so fast, but he did remember the defendant saying "I'll end you. I'll knock you out."

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He then smashed his wine bottle on a metal bollard as he lashed out at Mr Kessler, cutting his left cheek.

Ms Baqri said: "After he had been struck, the victim retrieved a torch from his cab in an effort to use it to fend off the defendant. At this point, the defendant still had hold of the broken bottle and continued to threaten the victim. When the victim approached him with the torch, however, the defendant ran off. It was at that point the victim became aware that his left cheek had been cut and was bleeding heavily.

"Police quickly attended the scene. The British Transport Police base was literally a few metres away. A description was provided and the defendant was located in a nearby off-licence."

Davies, formerly of Elizabeth Street, Burnley, pleaded guilty to assault causing grievous bodily harm. He also pleaded guilty to controlling and coercive behaviour and racially aggravated assault relating to two other victims.

One victim was his former girlfriend, Michelle Davis. The pair had begun a relationship in March 2020, in which Davies "was controlling and coercive towards her, verbally abused her, threatened her, made threats toward her property, and sent her abusive text messages." He also attacked her on two occasions, repeatedly kicking her and stamping on her as she begged him to stop.

The second victim was Prakash Patel, who was racially abused and assaulted by Davies as he walked his five-year-old son home from school on May 5 2020.

British Transport Police investigating officer DC Juliet Thomas said: “This was a horrifying attack on a man who was simply earning a living and attempting to protect his property. The victim has been left traumatised by what happened and feels nervous going about his everyday job, this in addition to the permanent facial scarring which Davies inflicted in his alcohol fuelled rage.

“Being intoxicated and claiming to thus have little memory of such a vicious attack is no defence, as is clearly demonstrated by the sentence handed down by the courts.”

Gareth Roberts, defending, said Davies was an Army veteran who served in Afghanistan and Iraq, and suffered from PTSD. He said: "The Craig Davies who is before you today is very different to the man who was staggering around, often drink, often on the cusp of some violence act of social disorder. There are a number of reasons for this. First is the absence of alcohol in his life, and second is the structure that prison has given.

"For the past eight years he has fought with alcoholism and poor mental health in the form of PTSD and the aftermath of a serious brain injury when he himself was the victim of an incident of violence. The more he was abusing alcohol, the worse his PTSD got, and as he drank more, his mental health continued to deteriorate. He found himself intermittently homeless, he lost work, he struggled to form relationships and he committed offences. All the offences were committed during that period of his life. It was a desperate time for him."

Davies was sentenced to a total of 42 months in prison, reduced to 40 months to account for the delay in the case coming to court.

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