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Disgruntled shopper hits manager with brick

Damien Adam Gray, 34, was barred from the Spar in Llangefni on Anglesey, Wales, when he attempted to buy cans of Strongbow – but after escorted out returned with a brick and assaulted manager Ricky Jones

A disgruntled shopper attacked a supermarket manager with a brick in what police labelled an “appallingly violent attack”.

Damien Adam Gray was escorted from the Spar in Llangefni on Anglesey, Wales, when he attempted to buy cider – having previously been banned.

But the 34-year-old said being taken outside by the shop manager Ricky Jones left him feeling “intimidated” and so he later returned armed with a brick, reports NorthWalesLive.

Gray tried to hit Mr Jones with the brick which caused scratches and cuts on his head, and left him needing hospital treatment, a court heard.

Accepting charges of common assault and possessing an offensive weapon in public, he was jailed for 10 months on Wednesday at at Caernarfon Crown Court.

Gray had entered the shop at 11.45am on December 2 and tried to buy three cans of Strongbow, prosecutor Jemma Gordon said.

However, he recognised by Mr Jones who gave him his money back and told him to leave.

“As he was being escorted out, the defendant grabbed Mr Jones by the neck and grabbed hold of his scarf and called the manager ‘an alien’,” Ms Gordon explained.

Once Gray was gone, Mr Jones rang the police.

But the prosecutor said Gray then returned to the store with a brick and was “muttering to himself”.

In a victim impact statement, Mr Jones said he had worked for Spar for 12 years, nine at their Llangefni store.

She said he wrote that “the last thing he expected was to be attacked by a customer” and was “horrified” at the incident.

Following the attack, he went to hospital to be checked for a possible concussion and suffered from a headache and sensitivity to light the following day.

Mr Jones said he was grateful that the police had arrived but feels nervous about going back to work.

He has since received counselling and has “thought very seriously about his life and reassessed his decisions”.

Brian Treadwell, defending, said Gray had been drinking but felt the manager’s actions in escorting him out of the shop had been “over the top”.

He claimed the defendant “did not appear to be representing a threat” yet the manager “pushed him around outside the store”.

Gray, of Cildwrn Road, Llangefni, nevertheless accepts he should not have returned with the brick.

During the assault, the defence alleged that Gray had “pulled out at the key moment”.

Mr Treadwell said the defendant had worked as a fibre glass manufacturer and repaired kayaks.

But both his parents had abused alcohol and he took time off work to look after them.

The court heard Gray had also been suffering with a psychosis and “hears voices”.

Jailing Gray, the judge Her Honour Nicola Jones also imposed a two-year restraining order banning the defendant from entering the Spar in Llangefni or contacting Mr Jones directly or indirectly.

Gray was jailed for 10 months for the possession charge and two for the assault to run concurrently. 

He was also jailed for one month and two weeks for breaching a suspended sentence, from an earlier offence, to run consecutively to the ten months term.

North Wales Police Sgt Ian Roberts said: “We welcome the sentence given to Damien Gray at Caernarfon Crown Court.

“This was a appallingly violent attack in broad daylight on a member of retail staff in our community. 

“The victim was incredibly lucky not to sustain serious injuries.

“I wish to acknowledge members of Spar staff for their bravery during this attack and for members of the public who assisted and prevented persons from entering the store.”

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