Thug spared from jail after attack

Chesterfield magistrates' court.

Chesterfield magistrates' court.

A booze-fuelled thug launched such a vicious attack on a man that witnesses thought his victim had been killed.

Derby Crown Court heard last Wednesday how Mark Chapman, 32, of Sycamore Avenue, Boythorpe, Chesterfield, confronted the victim after the complainant and his friends crossed paths with Chapman and someone had brushed shoulders with the defendant.

Chapman lifted the complainant off the ground, according to prosecuting barrister Abi Joyce, and threw him head first onto concrete before stamping on his head so hard that two witnesses thought he had been killed.

Miss Joyce said Chapman was walking down the street and the complainant was with friends walking the other way when Chapman and another man brushed against each other.

She said: “Two independent witnesses said they saw the defendant punch the victim to the face a number of times onto the ground. They both said they saw him pick him up off the ground and throw him onto concrete head first before stamping on his head. Both of them thought the man was dead.”

Chapman pleaded guilty to assault occasioning actual bodily harm after the attack on August 22, 2015. He also admitted a drink-driving offence after he had crashed a car into a wall while twice the legal drink-drive limit on August 12, 2015, just ten days before the assault.

The court heard how Chapman had subsequently breached a suspended sentence imposed in 2014 for assault.

Christopher Aspinall, defending, said Chapman had been sectioned four times in the past two years.

The 32-year-old was spared an immediate prison term for both offences as they were carried out while he was deemed to be “mentally unstable” and “at a low ebb” in his life, according to the court. Judge Peter Cooke sentenced Chapman to an 18-month jail sentence suspended for 18 months.