A 72-YEAR-OLD spinster who broke a neighbour’s arm with a spade in a row over a fence was yesterday jailed for 24 weeks.
Terminally ill June Iddon was led away from the dock by two burly security guards and down to the cells still shouting “I’m innocent” as she was jailed at Preston Crown Court.
Iddon had been convicted of assault occasioning actual bodily harm on her neighbour, Jeffrey Grundy, 62, after hitting him with a spade in November last year. The neighbours, of Hesketh Lane, Tarleton, Lancashire, had had a long-running dispute over a strip of land separating the two properties.
Passing sentence recorder Lesley Anderson QC said: “Notwithstanding your age and physical frailty a message needs to be sent to you that your behaviour cannot be acceptable.”
The judge told Iddon she had ignored a civil court ruling in favour of Mr Grundy over the boundary dispute. Iddon then interrupted saying: “I’m sorry. That’s not true.”
The judge replied: “Listen please and pay attention to what I am saying.”
She added: “Even today you have demonstrated no real appreciation of how serious the injury to Mr Grundy could have been, had he not been able to break the trajectory of the spade with his arm.
“You have shown a complete lack of any remorse.
“I am concerned you have accepted no culpability or responsibility for your actions.”
Jailing Iddon for 24 weeks, half of which she will serve in jail, she added: “I make the order with significant regret, to send a woman like you to prison is a significant waste of public resources. But in my judgement you need a sustained period in which to reflect on your behaviour.”
Iddon was led away, reluctantly, shouting: “I’m innocent! It’s my land entirely!”
She was convicted last month following a three-day trial at Preston, during which the jury heard the neighbours had a four-year dispute about the strip of land between them.
Outside court Mr Grundy had little sympathy, and said if he could he would move.
“If you’ve got someone crazy like that you can’t sell your house,” he said.
“I think the sentence is immaterial. The only thing is, I will have a pleasant Christmas without her.”
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