December 21 2014 Latest news:
Peter Walsh, Crime correspondent
Wednesday, December 19, 2012
CCTV footage released today captures a moment of violence in Norwich city centre which left one man with life-changing injuries and another facing an eight and a half years jail term.
Norfolk Police have released the 52-second video to raise awareness of the consequences of drink-fuelled violence among men in the city’s night-time economy.
After a night out drinking, 30-year-old Kieron Hayden used a plank of wood to launch a brutal and unprovoked assault on another man as he walked along Prince of Wales Road.
The attack left his 20 year old victim in intensive care for a week and scarred for life – left partially deaf, with a visual impairment and broken nose.
Hayden, of Court Farm Avenue, Epsom, Surrey, was today jailed at Norwich Crown Court having pleaded guilty at the start of his trial to causing grievous bodily harm with intent on Sunday, April 3.
Norwich Policing Commander Superintendent Paul Sanford said the sentence should serve as a warning for people who visit the city that violence will not be tolerated in the night time economy.
“Sadly this case demonstrates the extreme levels of violence regularly seen by officers on Prince of Wales Road and the necessity to reduce the early-morning availability of alcohol which often fuels such mindless attacks.
“Thousands of people will be heading to the city this weekend and next to celebrate Christmas and the New Year. I hope this case serves as a timely reminder about the damaging consequences that consuming excessive amounts of alcohol can have.”
Hayden launched the attack as he walked in a group with his victim towards Norwich Railway Station at 4.20am on Sunday 3 April last year, after the men had been for a night out in Norwich. For reasons only known to himself, Hayden struck the victim forcefully round the head with a piece of wood in a baseball bat motion and then hit him twice more after he fell to the floor. When Hayden had finished the attack he ran from the scene and returned to his home in Surrey.
Investigating officer Detective Constable Graham Kett, of Norwich CID, welcomed the sentence saying: “This was a complex enquiry, complicated by the fact that both the victim and the offender lived out of the county. CCTV was crucial in identifying those involved in the incident, enabling us to eventually track down the offender via Facebook.
“Violence of this magnitude, attacking a victim as he lay motionless and defenceless on the floor, is completely unacceptable and we will go to great lengths to locate the people responsible and bring them to justice.”
Tackling violent crime is a priority for Norfolk Constabulary and senior officers have been working closely with clubs and bars on Prince of Wales Road to reduce alcohol-fuelled crime and anti-social behaviour.
In August this year a host of venues voluntarily agreed to call time on late night drinking – agreeing to stop serving alcohol at 4am after it was recognised the early hour availability of alcohol was a key factor in disorder.