Chesterfield lockdown romance ended with boozy violence, court hears

A long-distance romance which descended into “a number of arguments” ended with boozy violence after a couple moved into a Chesterfield house together during lockdown.

Friday, 24th September 2021, 9:20 pm

Chesterfield Magistrates Court heard Samuel Byrd, 29, left his partner with a lump on her head and over £2,000 damage to her home during their final row.

Byrd moved into his now ex-partner’s home early in the pandemic while social distancing was still in place - however the court heard he accepted “this was a mistake”.

Prosecutor Sarah Haslam told how in November 2020 Byrd was cautioned over an alleged assault against the Chesterfield woman.

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Samuel Byrd, 29, left his partner with a lump on her head and over £2,000 damage to her home during their final row

And then in June this year police found her crying at her home when a drunken squabble between the pair got out of hand.

District Judge Tim Spruce was told how the pair - both “intoxicated” - accused each other of infidelity when they returned home after a night out.

Ms Haslam said during the quarrel angry Byrd damaged a wardrobe door, a kitchen drawer and a bin - then removed memory cards from her home CCTV system to cover his tracks.

He also shoved a fan - which then hit his girlfriend’s head - leaving her with a lump.

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The victim, who said she was “frightened” of Byrd, told police the relationship was now over and she wanted a restraining order.

Byrd’s solicitor John Wilford told the court his client, from Wokingham, had now moved back to Berkshire and was living with his parents.

Mr Wilford said the couple “had a lot to drink” during the disastrous evening and the disagreement began when two girls sat at the table where they were sitting.

The solicitor said Byrd had caused damage in the house out of “frustration” and accepted “pushing” the fan - but had not intended to cause injury.

Byrd, of Calver Close, admitted assault by beating and criminal damage.

District Judge Tim Spruce told him: “The court takes a very dim view of violence in a domestic context.”

However the judge noted Byrd had no previous convictions and what happened had been “reckless” rather than intentional.

He was given a six-week curfew in effect on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays between 9pm-6am and an 18-month restraining order.

He was also made to pay £1,200 compensation.

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