Drugs man who broke teen’s jaw avoids jail

A MAN who got into a violent confrontation over a drug debt, that resulted in a teenager suffering a broken jaw, has avoided jail.

Alex Jones, 19, of Richmond Lea, Mirfield, was still only 17 in August 2015 when he tried to make money by selling a quarter-ounce of cannabis to friends in £10 bags, Leeds Crown Court was told.

Prosecuting, Mr Tom Storey said that one of Jones’s customers had refused to pay and that they agreed by phone to meet near the site of the old Swan public house on Huddersfield Road, Fir Cottage.

Jones was accompanied by friends and got into a confrontation with a teenager with the other group. Mr Storey said Jones threw a punch and started a fight with the youth which spilled into the busy main road, forcing traffic to swerve out of the way.

Jones head-butted the other youth, fracturing his jaw, according to the prosecution.

At that point another teenager picked up a piece of broken glass and hit Jones in the neck with it before running away. Jones still had the glass embedded in his neck when police and ambulance staff arrived.

Alex Menary said in mitigation that Jones was only 17 at the time and had since matured, getting a job and being offered an apprenticeship.

“He made a number of bad choices that night,” said Mr Menary, who said his client was genuinely remorseful.

Jones also had a vivid scar on his neck as a result of the fight.

The teenager who inflicted the glass wound is still only 17 and cannot be named. On his behalf, Mr Andrew Dallas said he was also much younger at the time and had been seriously affected by the events.

He said he lashed out because he was upset at seeing his friend being badly beaten.

Jones, who admitted a charge of inflicting grievous bodily harm and attempting to supply cannabis, received a 12-month community order with 200 hours unpaid work.

The 17-year-old, also from Mirfield, admitted a charge of wounding and was given a 12-month youth rehabilitation order incorporating a 12-day activity requirement and 100 hours of unpaid work.

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