Bradford Telegraph and ArgusFormer soldier hit man with a bottle (From Bradford Telegraph and Argus)

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Sentence suspended after judge hears how hotel room was smashed up

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Former soldier hit man with a bottle Former soldier hit man with a bottle

A decorated former soldier who smashed up a hotel room and then hit a man with a bottle has avoided an immediate prison sentence.

Blake Freeman admitted assaulting Lynden Jagger during the disturbance at the Ibis hotel in Bradford last November, and yesterday a judge ordered him to pay his victim £750 compensation.

Freeman, 29, of Waterloo Grove, Pudsey, also pleaded guilty to damaging a television belonging to the hotel, and he will have to pay the company £150 compensation.

Prosecutor Shamaila Qureshi told Bradford Crown Court that Mr Jagger had intervened during an earlier incident involving Freeman and another man, but later that night the defendant came back down to the reception area of the hotel.

After telling the receptionist that he had “trashed’’ his room Freeman started punching Mr Jagger.

Ms Qureshi said Freeman then hit the complainant with a vodka bottle, knocking him unconscious.

The court heard that Mr Jagger suffered cuts and bruising to his face and head as a result of the attack, which stopped when another man pulled Freeman off.

When the receptionist went up to the room she saw that the television had been pulled off the wall and smashed and the blinds had been torn.

Freeman, who had served in Afghanistan, was later found on the nearby Shipley-Airedale Road, and during his police interview he admitted causing the damage and the assault.

He explained that he had been drinking and had become angry after receiving a phone call from his wife.

Ms Qureshi said Freeman told police officers he had anger issues following his time in the Army and he knew what he had done was wrong.

After taking into account a psychiatric report on Freeman as well as character references and certificates relating to his Army service, Recorder Jonathan Sandiford decided to suspend an 18-month prison term for two years.

Barrister James Lake said the psychiatric report indicated that his client was experiencing signs of post-traumatic stress at the time and that was something the judge could take into account.

Mr Lake said Freeman had served six years in the army and was “a decorated soldier’’ during that time.

Recorder Sandiford said Freeman’s behaviour that night was disgraceful and it was perfectly clear that he had had far too much to drink.

Under the terms of the suspended sentence order Freeman will be subject to an electronically-monitored night-time curfew for the next three months and he must also participate in a 30-day activity requirement.

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