Seaton chef jailed for unprovoked attack

Judge signals crackdown on late night violence.

A Seaton chef has been jailed for an attack which has left a young carpenter unable to work.

Polish national Slawomir Banach lurched across the street, punched a complete stranger for no reason at all, and them pushed him through a plate glass window.

Victim Tristan Fayter-Small, aged 27, suffered a severed tendon in his left wrist which has cost him the movement of one of his fingers and which may prevent him ever being able to resume his job.

He was walking home from a night out through the centre of Sidmouth and minding his own business. He did not even see his attacker until he was hurled through the window of an electrical shop.

Banach was jailed as a judge at Exeter Crown Court signalled a crackdown on unprovoked drunken late night violence.

Banach, 25, of Manor Court, Seaton, admitted wounding and was jailed for 16 months.

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Recorder Mr Michael Perroy, QC, told him: “This was quite simply an appalling act of violence against a perfectly innocent, hard working young man walking home who was attacked for no reason other than you were absurdly drunk.

“You decided to run across the road and punch him. There was no provocation, no excuse, no reason at all. The end result was that the two of you went through a plate glass window.

“Your wholly undeserving victim suffered serious injuries which may cause him permanent disablement, which is serious because he is a carpenter and it is an injury to his hand.

“His victim impact statement is about as upsetting a document as you could read from a man involved in an incident of this sort.

“This happened in a town centre where people are entitled to go about their lawful business as he was without being attacked and caused what will almost certainly be a long lasting injury.

“The message has to go out loud and clear from these courts that it is no excuse to say when you get involved in an offence of violence ‘oh, I was drunk’.

“Far too many people feel they can get drunk and assault people for the sheer joy of the thing. It is wholly unacceptable and the courts will treat it as such.”

Mr David Bowen, prosecuting, said Mr Fayter-Small was walking home in the early hours when he was attacked near the Radway Cinema in Radway Place and thrown through the window of C&C Electricals.

He said he suffered numerous cuts of which the most serious was to his left lower arm and which required surgery to repair two tendons.

Mr Bowen said Mr Fayter-Smith may need further surgery before he is able to work again and told police that his injury also made it hard for him to lift his four-year-old son.

Mr Nigel Wraith, defending, said Banach had been in Britain since 2006 and was working as a chef to support a young child who was living with his ex-partner in France.

He said the offence happened at a time when the relationship had just broken down and he returned to Britain where he was looking for work and turned to drink because he was feeling depressed.