Student sent to jail for ‘naive’ iron bar attack

Luke Gittins
Luke Gittins

A student from Leyland took the law into his own hands and attacked a man he believed had hurt a girl he knew, knocking his teeth out with an iron bar.

Luke Gittins 21, has been jailed for two years and eight months after setting upon two men at a campfire on the Moss Side Industrial Estate.

Weeks before the attack, Gittins had made a Facebook threat to “slap him and splatter his blood everywhere” after one of the men refused to remove a picture from the social networking site.

When Gittins arrived at the campfire, he did not know the two men would be there.

But, as Luke McManus sat by the fire, he felt a hard blow to his head and looked round to see Gittins standing right behind him brandishing an iron bar.

Gittins then told the other man, Jacob Colquitt, to get on his knees and hit him hard in the face with the bar, knocking out three of his front teeth.

Preston Crown Court heard Gittins, of Wigton Avenue, Leyland, has no previous convictions and has never been in trouble with the police before.

He had attempted to contact one of his victims to make amends since his arrest.

Judge Simon Newell said: “It is more chance than good fortune, particularly for your victims, that their injuries were not more serious.

“They could have proved fatal.

“There was a substantial disagreement and bad feeling to the extent that you set out on Facebook precisely what you intended to do and you did it.

“You did that because of understandings you had from a girl about how they had apparently behaved towards her.

“You effectively were judge and jury on her behalf and decided to carry out punishment.

“There are systems in place where you or she feels someone has carried out a criminal offence against her and the police are called in.

“I take into consideration you are not a criminal and someone who engages in violence.

“I also accept this was on the spur of the moment and I take into consideration your immaturity and naivety.”

Gittins’ mum Thelma said: “He is a clever lad and it is just not like him at all.

“Something must have really got to him.

“But he has made a big mistake. What he did is completely unacceptable and he is paying for it now.”

Gittins pleaded guilty to causing grievous bodily harm with intent (GBH).