Yobs jailed after street sword attack

A PAIR of "toughs" were jailed for their part in two violent incidents including an attack with a sword.

In April last year Anthony Rhodes lost the little finger of his right hand after being struck with a two-foot-long sword during a confrontation in a Bradford street.

Eight months later Halifax landlord Malcolm Stevenson suffered a fractured skull and arm after he was attacked at the Prince of Orange pub.

On Thursday (April 06) Carl Coe, 24, of Westcombe Court, Wyke, received a total jail term of five and a half years after he admitted unlawfully wounding Mr Stevenson and being found guilty of affray in respect the earlier incident.

David Berry, 22, of Lingdale Road, Woodside, Bradford, was jailed for a total of eight and a half years after he was found guilty of wounding Mr Rhodes with intent to do him grievous bodily, and two allegations of affray.

Bradford Crown Court heard that the violence in April had been sparked by a drug debt owed by Mr Rhodes's son Shaun to Berry.

Passing sentence Judge James Spencer QC told the pair: "You Berry and Coe must think that you're toughs. For whatever reason - and it is quite clear that Shaun Rhodes said it was because he owed you money for drugs - you two went looking for him in order to visit him with violence."

Prosecutor David McGonigal said the pair were in a Peugeot car driven by 24-year-old Jonathan Robinson when they came across Shaun Rhodes and his brother Richard in Reevy Avenue.

Berry and Coe chased Shaun Rhodes but he got away and the brothers then went to their father's house in Wibsey Park Avenue fearing further trouble.

When they arrived they found the three men outside the house and their father carrying a pick-axe handle.

During fighting in the street another brother, Andrew Rhodes, was punched and kicked and it was alleged that Robinson had driven the car at him.

Berry got the sword from the boot of the car and as he swung it at Anthony Rhodes he struck his little finger which later had to be amputated.

Robinson, of Fenwick Drive, Woodside, Bradford, was jailed for 18 months after he was convicted of affray.

Judge Spencer said Anthony Rhodes had been subjected to violence of the most severe kind after he refused to be "cowed" by the trio's presence.

He said: "The use of a blade in violence in the street with serious injuries cannot be overlooked."

It was while Berry and Coe were on bail that they were involved, along with 22-year-old Carl Scully, of Markfield Avenue, Low Moor, in the violence at the Prince of Orange pub last December.

Mr McGonigal said the group had been drinking for most of the day and they were spoken to by Mr Stevenson about their behaviour.

"One of the group said they had been celebrating winning at court that day," said Mr McGonigal.

Because of their behaviour Mr Stevenson refused to serve them any more drink and that sparked a disturbance.

The court heard that Berry was involved in an assault on Mr Stevenson while Scully began throwing glasses at the bar area.

Although Coe initially acted as a peacemaker he later went upstairs where he struck Mr Stevenson twice with a table leg.

As a result of the attack Mr Stevenson suffered a fractured skull which had left him with blurred vision and a fractured left forearm which had to have a metal plate and screws inserted in it.

He had also suffered injuries to two of the fingers on his right hand.

Scully was sentenced to 18 months in prison after pleading guilty to affray.

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