Clamped Vehicle?

A man has been convicted of assaulting a bailiff and damaging his wheel clamp.

But Paul Woodward, 52, was cleared of assaulting an emergency worker by headbutting a police officer who went after him.

A court heard two bailiffs had been called to Woodward’s home in Melyd Avenue, Prestatyn in January to take goods in payment for an unpaid parking ticket issued by Denbighshire County Council.

Llandudno Magistrates, who today found Woodward guilty of common assault by spitting and criminal damage to the wheel clamp after a two-day trial, fined him £525.

He was also ordered to pay £30 compensation to the bailiff for the wheel clamp.

The court heard the two bailiffs had turned up at the defendant’s home in Melyd Avenue one evening.

They introduced themselves but had paperwork about an unpaid parking fine relating to a “burgundy Peugeot 2008”, which Woodward said he didn’t own.

It was registered to another address in Prestatyn which Woodward claimed was his mother’s, who had died seven years previously

The bailiffs asked him if the vehicle – a white Citroen Berlingo van – outside his home was his and he said it was, although he claimed it was on loan.

The bailiffs put a wheel clamp on it as part of their lawful power to seize goods. But Woodward then came out of his home, fetched an angle grinder and damaged it as it came off.

In the encounter, Woodward said he was called a “fat b******” but bailiff Christopher Whitney insisted Woodward spat towards him. Police were called.

Later, Woodward drove away but when police stopped his car – and an officer leaned into the car to release his seatbelt – any contact of heads was “accidental”, the court found.

And on the allegation of assaulting an emergency worker – a PC Alun Evans – Woodward told the court today that he was “shocked” by the officer’s swearing and using a baton to bang on his car window.

He was “passively resistant”, according to his solicitor Bob Vickery.

Chairman of the bench Toby Prosser said magistrates found Woodward guilty of common assault against the bailiff and criminal damage to the wheel clamp, but he was cleared of assaulting the police officer.

They fined him £525 and ordered him to pay £30 compensation to the bailiff for the wheel clamp.