Newly-wed on car rampage

A DRUNKEN newly-wed went on the rampage and smashed up his mother-in-law’s car with a plank of wood – without realising she was sitting in it.

Dad-of-four Christopher Dawes started his married life by leaving his wife’s mum “fearing for her personal safety” when he flew into a rage after a heavy drinking session.

The 32-year-old, who had only been married to wife Gemma for five weeks, firstly smashed up his wife’s car with the plank of wood before turning his attentions to his mother-in-law’s vehicle and striking the windscreen.

He rained blows down on the glass which was just inches away from Dorothy Stewart as she sat in the front seat of the vehicle.

Dawes, of Warren Road, in Hartlepool, pleaded guilty to causing criminal damage to his mother-in-law’s car, criminal damage to his wife’s car and causing fear of unlawful violence, in Warren Road, on August 14.

Prosecutor Lilian Atkinson gave a brief outline of the case to justices, saying: “This was a domestic violence incident and the damage was caused to his wife’s car and her mother’s car as well.

“He’d made threats towards his wife, with whom he’s been in a relationship for eight years and married to for five weeks.”

Dawes’ solicitor, Adrian Morris, told the court that Dawes had indulged in a “heavy drinking session” with friends at his home and at some point the defendant’s wife left the house.

He followed shortly afterwards brandishing the plank of wood.

The court heard he flew into a rage and started smashing up the family car, which is in his wife’s name, before turning his attentions to Mrs Stewart’s car when she turned up in her vehicle.

He said: “He and his friends had enjoyed quite a heavy drinking session at his house.

“At some point his wife left. There was an incident in the street. He was extremely drunk and he took a plank of wood to the family car and also when her mum arrived the wood was used to smash and crack windows on that car.

“His mother-in-law was actually in the car when he was striking the windscreen which was in close proximity to her and quite reasonably she will have feared for her personal safety.”

He added: “He’s been extremely candid in police interview and he apologises for what’s happened.

“He thought his mother-in-law was outside the car, but he has since found out that she was in the car.

“The incident will concern you about why he became so angry. He doesn’t know why he became so aggressive with his wife and her mother.

“He hasn’t troubled the courts for seven years and that was for a drunk and disorderly.”

Chairman of the bench Lynne Hodgson adjourned sentencing Dawes until September 15 to allow the Probation Service to carry out a pre-sentence report.

He was bailed until then.