Pal swings baseball bat at friend in row over partner's 'flirting'

·2-min read
File photo: Getty
File photo: Getty

AN Old Town man grabbed a baseball bat and swung it at his friend after the companion took offence to whether his partner was flirting with him.

Philip Holt was at his friend Robin Harding’s home on January 7 when he attacked him after taking issue to his partner’s behaviour with him.

It was heard that Holt had “flown towards” Harding, who in turn went upstairs and grabbed a baseball bat.

Both men appeared in court on June 15, where they admitted a public order offence.

Holt, of Essex Walk in Walcot, was fined while Harding, of Homeleaze in Old Town, will be sentenced at a later date.

Swindon Magistrates’ Court heard that Harding and his partner had friends over on that evening, which was “going well”.

“Essentially there was an argument that appeared to start in the address, but moved outside,” prosecutor Natalie Cheesman told the court.

“An argument ensued when Mr Holt felt that his partner was flirting with Mr Harding.

“Mr Holt had flown towards Mr Harding. Mr Harding has gone upstairs at some point and come back down with a baseball bat.”

Ring doorbell footage from a neighbour’s house shows 39-year-old Holt and his partner in the street, and approached him from behind a car.

The bat is then swung around and the men are seen grappling over it.

Police arrived and arrested the men. In interview, 47-year-old Harding said he was acting in self-defence, but pleaded guilty to a Section 4 public order offence on a “full facts basis”.

Defending Harding, Alys Stober said that a number of his convictions related to alcohol, asking for a pre-sentence report from the probation officer.

Adjourning for a pre-sentence report, chairman of the bench, Jane Flew, said: “This was a very serious incident, made more serious because you were under the influence of alcohol, and made much more serious because you were threatening an individual with a baseball bat and the risk of harm was high.

“We do feel we need a report about you and all options, including custody, will be considered when you are sentenced.”

The case was adjourned until July 12.

Meanwhile, Holt, in a separate hearing, was fined £669, and ordered to pay costs of £85 and a £69 victim surcharge.

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