Remorseless thug is jailed after he punched and left victim with life-changing injuries
A thug has been locked-up after he punched a man and left him with catastrophic brain injuries as his head struck the floor.
Derby Crown Court heard on June 25 how Graham Gardiner, 40, of Chesterfield Road, Shuttlewood, attacked the man in the Sitwell Arms, in Main Street, Morton, Alfreton, on the evening of November 14, last year.
Judge Jonathan Bennett told Gardiner: “I have seen you through this time, both at the plea hearing and during the trial and you have not shown the slightest bit of remorse about this incident.
“I have read the very moving statement from the 16-year-old son of the victim.
“In it he says he feels he has almost lost his father.
“He says he’s not the same person and talks of how he will no longer be able to enjoy doing the things he did with his father like you will be able to do with your four children when you are released from prison.”
Gardiner, who has previous convictions, denied causing the injuries to the victim at a previous trial hearing but a jury found him guilty of assault occasioning grievous bodily harm.
The court heard how the victim was punched and fell to the floor and struck his head leaving him with severe injuries.
The victim was not known to Gardiner but the defendant punched him to the face after an argument, according to the court.
Judge Bennett said: “The blow was of sufficient strength to knock the man backwards and the landlord of the pub thought he was already unconscious as he fell because his arms did not move from his side.
“It is then that he hits his head on the ground causing these life-changing injuries.”
Judge Bennett said the man has suffered a number of impairments as a result of the blow and from striking his head on the floor including speech and memory loss.
He added: “He has suffered serious brain injuries. He has lost dexterity to his upper limbs and his vision is unlikely to improve.
“In the future he will require someone to look after his personal care.
“That is likely to be his wife, who is a nurse, but it will mean she will be caring for him for the rest of her life.”
Lucky Thandi, mitigating, said Gardiner, who is a father-of-four, did not set out to go to the pub and cause anyone any harm.