Cleared of street attack for heroin

A HEROIN user has been cleared of attacking a man to steal his drugs after insisting another man was to blame.

Mark Trotter, 25, stood trial at Teesside Crown Court for the attack on Craig Howells in Oxford Road, Hartlepool, on April 12.

It was claimed the victim was headbutted three times, kneed and bitten on the hand during the attack.

Mr Howells claimed Mr Trotter attacked him after the pair bumped into each other and tried to steal a bag of heroin the victim was carrying.

But Mr Trotter said he took another man to meet Mr Howells to get drugs and it was the third man who carried out the attack.

Trotter was found not guilty of assault with intent to rob yesterday afternoon.

Giving evidence he said: “I saw him pull Mr Howells up and throw him against an alleygate. He punched and kicked him.

“I left. I didn’t want to be anywhere near the area.”

Rebecca Brown, defending, said: “Craig Howells says you assaulted him with intent to rob him. Did you?”

Trotter, formerly of Rugby Street, Hartlepool, said: “No, I didn’t.”