Man punched disabled love rival in face

IPSWICH: A man who punched a disabled man in the face in a “cowardly” attack is today facing community work.

Robert Bray, of Timperleys, Hintlesham, assaulted wheelchair-bound Mark Easton following an argument over his girlfriend.

Bray, 31, appeared at South East Suffolk Magistrates’ Court yesterday having previously pleaded guilty to the assault, which took place on September 16.

Mark Holt, for Bray, said: “Mr Easton’s ex-girlfriend is the defendant’s current partner.

“The defendant had heard that Mr Easton recently asked his girlfriend to go to his house and watch DVDs of a risqu� nature.

“A few days later the defendant and Mr Easton were drinking together in the Old Rep pub in Ipswich town centre.

“Mr Easton left the pub in his wheelchair and went to get the bus home.

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“The defendant followed him, caught up and punched him in the nose.

“Mr Easton’s nose was not broken but the punch resulted in him suffering a few burst blood vessels.”

District judge David Cooper told Bray: “This was a very cowardly thing to do.

“It seems that there was no provocation on Mr Easton’s part.

“To follow a wheelchair-bound man home and punch him in the face is just not acceptable behaviour.”

Bray was given a community order for one year, ordered to carry out 80 hours of unpaid work and attend regular supervision appointments.

A restraining order was placed on Bray preventing him from contacting Mr Easton for one year.

Bray was also ordered to pay �100 compensation to Mr Easton and legal costs of �85.