March 11 2014 Latest news:
Tuesday, February 25, 2014
A Norwich man, who admitted setting fire to his partner’s bra after a binge drinking session, has been sentenced to a community order and 100 hours of unpaid work.
Simon Locke, 30, c/o Honey Close, off Knox Road, Norwich, appeared at the city’s magistrates court today having pleaded guilty to to arson on January 12 this year.
The incident occurred at the Norwich home Locke shared with his partner.
The couple had been in a relationship for about five years and Ryan Creek, mitigating, said that over a period of time, they had both “turned to alcohol as a form of stress relief”.
He added that Locke had “taken to binge drinking” and that “the day in question was one of those sessions”.
Locke had been drinking since about noon and was found passed out on the bedroom floor at about 7pm.
He got into bed and was sick, causing his partner to ask him to leave because of his behaviour.
She later found him sitting on the edge of the bed with a bra and a lighter in his hands.
Oliver Haswell, prosecuting, said: “There had been an argument between himself and the complainant. He had set fire to a number of items of clothing. This had set fire to the carpet and she managed to stamp it out.”
He added Locke then took a pile of clothes and tried to set fire to them on the gas cooker, but his partner stopped him.
Mr Creek said Locke had got drunk “to provoke some sort of reaction” from his partner, so she would talk to him.
“This escalated into the events you have heard,” he told the court.
“The defendant tells me his recollection of that is pretty scant. It was more of a reckless reaction than a deliberate attempt to set fire to things.”
Mr Creek added that Locke realised the implications of his actions, saying the incident was “a massive wake up call to him” and that he was “utterly remorseful”.
The court heard Locke had not drunk alcohol since the incident and has attended a number of sessions with the Norfolk Recovery Partnership, which helps people with drug and alcohol addictions.
Sentencing him to a community order and 100 hours of unpaid work, John Claxton, chairman of the bench of magistrates, said: “You have recognised you have a problem and you have sought help and assistance independently of any order made by a court. That counts to your credit.”
Locke was also made to pay £100 compensation both for the items burned and the fire-damaged carpet and a £60 victim surcharge.