Man cleared of attack on teen scooter riders

PUBLISHED: 06:55 20 July 2006 | UPDATED: 21:12 29 May 2010

THE owner of a Felsted kennels and cattery was cleared of assaulting two teenage boys by a Chelmsford Crown Court jury on Friday. Steven Brown, 50, of Stebbing Road, Felsted a safety conscious former airline-pilot, denied allegations that he inflicted g

THE owner of a Felsted kennels and cattery was cleared of assaulting two teenage boys by a Chelmsford Crown Court jury on Friday.

Steven Brown, 50, of Stebbing Road, Felsted a "safety conscious" former airline-pilot, denied allegations that he inflicted grievous bodily harm on one 13-year-old and assaulted the other, a youth of 17.

Chelmsford Crown Court heard allegations of the two incidents on August 13 last year. It took the jury just over two hours to acquit Brown on both counts.

Matthew Bagnall, prosecuting, said: "Flitch Way was a path running along the disused railway line between Braintree and Dunmow. It was used by walkers, horseriders, and on occasions by young children and teenagers riding motor scooters and quad bikes off-road."

Brown who ran a kennels and cattery bordering Flitch Way had "concerns" about young children and teenagers riding the motorised scooters and quad bikes along the path, which he used to walk the dogs in his care.

Brown told the court that he had spoken to them before and told them they were not allowed to, and also reported this on a number of occasions to police.

Mr Bagnall said: "On August 13 last year a 17-year-old boy was riding a motorised scooter along the path with a 13-year-old friend as a pillion passenger. Brown suddenly jumped out of some bushes and struck the rider across the face with an implement, believed to be pliers or wire cutters, and swore at them, it was alleged. The victim sustained cuts to his face."

It was then alleged that the boys carried on their way and returned to the older boy's home. The younger lad, then alone, pushed the scooter back towards his home and was walking along Stebbing Road, Felsted, when he noticed the defendant appeared to be following him. The lad decided to sit upon the scooter and tried to start it but was unable to do so.

It was then alleged that Brown came up towards the youth and kicked the scooter twice, the second kick causing the scooter and rider to fall to the ground breaking his leg. A young woman saw the lad lying on the ground and called ambulance.

Brown was arrested and accepted that earlier in the day he had some contact with the two youths on a scooter but denied striking the rider in the face.

Brown, said: "As it came towards me I put my arm out to protect myself and the boy ran straight into it. I had the handle of a flexi-lead in my hand and the boy ran into that, his upper body. It wasn't much of an impact.

"I considered that I was the victim of a hit and run."

Adding that the accusation that he struck the boy with pliers or wire-cutters was "totally false".

Brown denied that the second incident when the boy's scooter was alleged to have been kicked twice, ever took place. He said it must be a fabrication on the boy's part.

Brown, said: "I don't understand why he should be saying that. I don't know the boy. I don't see why he has a grudge against me to make such lies up. My wife will testify I was at home with her that evening."

Brown, said: "I'm a man of good character and a law abiding citizen. I'm quite upset having to come to court today, having my good name slurred.

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