Judge gives Beccles mother ‘one last chance’ to avoid prison

A BECCLES mother who breached a community sentence order has been given 'one last chance' by a judge to stay out of prison.

Lacey Knights, of Castle Hill, admitted only completing half of her 150 hour unpaid work requirement, after being given a suspended prison sentence in November for an 'unprovoked' late-night attack on a man in Beccles.

However, on Tuesday at Ipswich Crown Court, Judge David Goodin decided to give her one last chance to complete the order, rather than sending her to prison.

Judge Goodin said: 'There was no doubt when I read the papers in this case this morning that you would be going straight to prison for four months.'

Instead after hearing her circumstances, he added six months supervision to her sentence and ordered her to pay �25 costs.

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Marcus Crosskell, prosecuting, said Knights, 19, had only completed half of her unpaid work requirement and since the order was passed she had recorded six acceptable absences and seven unacceptable absences.

Andrew Thompson, for Knights, said most of her absences were due to either her or her 22-month-old daughter being ill and accepted she should have communicated these difficulties to her offender manager.

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He added Knights was 'genuinely worried' about being sent to prison because of the effect it would have on her daughter.

In November Knights was given a four-month prison sentence suspended for 18 months, ordered to do 150 hours unpaid work in the community and made the subject of a three-month curfew order.

On that occasion the court heard that Knights, of Castle Hill, Beccles, and her boyfriend Sam Ophetveld had been involved in an attack on a man in the town, causing him a wound to his forehead, cuts to his mouth, a swollen nose and injury to his eye.

Ophetveld, 21, of Fieldview Gardens, Beccles, admitted assault causing actual bodily harm and was sentenced to two years' detention in a young offenders' institution.

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