Bideford baseball bat attackers jailed for battering sleeping man

Ben Garrett and Jack Jury

Ben Garrett and Jack Jury - Credit: DC Police

A pair of baseball bat attackers have been jailed for smashing their way into a flat and attacking a man as he slept on a sofa. 

Ben Garrett and Jack Jury had a grudge against homeless victim Liam Duggan over an unpaid debt and tracked him down to a friend’s home where he was staying. 

They kicked open the door of a flat in Geneva Court, Bideford in the middle of the night and went into the living room with metal baseball bats. 

They both attacked Mr Duggan, who needed hospital treatment for a five-centimetre gash on his head and heavy bruising on his back and sides. 

Garrett went into the bedroom of tenant Gemma Langdon and seized her phone to prevent her calling the police, Exeter Crown Court was told. 

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Jury, aged 27, and Garrett, aged 22, both of Clovelly Road, Bideford, admitted wounding and were both jailed for a year and four months by Judge David Evans at Exeter Crown Court. 

Joe Avent, aged 27, of Bideford, who entered the flat but was not armed and did not take part in the assault, admitted affray and was ordered to do 20 days of rehabilitation activities. 

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The Judge told them: “You had some kind of beef with Mr Duggan and had all been taking on board some Dutch courage. You made an uninvited entry to the flat where he was staying. 

“Two of you attacked him with metal bats, waking him up, and causing a wound above his eye. You have now taken full responsibility for your stupid decision to attack him with weapons.” 

Mr Tom Bradnock, prosecuting, said the three men broke through the door of the flat in the early hours of October 13 last year and attacked Mr Duggan, who awoke to find himself being beaten by the baseball bats. 

He and Ms Langdon recognised them and one of them dropped a key fob at the scene which enabled police to trace them and recover the bats, both of which had Mr Duggan’s blood on them. 

Mr Jason Beal, for Garrett, and Mr Piers Norsworthy, for Jury, said they have no previous convictions and acted out of immaturity and bravado and while under the influence of cocaine and alcohol. 

Mr William Parkhill, for Avent, said he played a minor role in the overall incident, did not know the others had bats, and left as soon as the violence started. 

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