Assault after victim’s dog ‘followed attacker’

AN ALFRETON man is heading for a reconciliation with the woman he attacked after a court ended his spell in custody.

John Picken spent 40 days in prison while on remand following the July 13 assault on Michelle Pemblington.

She told police he became aggressive after her dog followed him into the bathroom at her flat.

He grabbed her throat and pushed her against a wardrobe, banging her head, and damaged bedroom items.

“He threw a vase in the dining room. It smashed and damaged a door. He pushed her onto a sofa, then grabbed her throat,” prosecutor Helen Griffiths told Chesterfield Magistrates’ Court.

“She said she believed their two-month relationship was over and she was scared for her safety and her dog’s safety.”

Picken, 36, was arrested and claimed there was tension in the relationship because she mistakenly thought he was having an affair.

“He said she had a go at him for playing loud music because there was an elderly neighbour, and this started the argument,” said Mrs Griffiths, adding that Ms Pemblington wanted a reconciliation.

Picken, of Firs Gardens, Alfreton, admitted assault and damage.

He had previous convictions for these offences and was jailed last year for perverting the course of justice.

He was made the subject of a two-year probation supervision order, including that he attend an anger management programme.

“He has problems with violence when he is angry,” said Joe Harvey, for Picken, who is also a carer for his mother..

Picken told the court: “I’m very sorry for what I’ve done. My mother is quite ill at the moment and I would appreciate not being sent down.”