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Bloody Golf

from The Guardian UK

Psychiatric nurse jailed for golf rage attack

Amateur golfer sent to prison for nine months after beating a fellow player around the head with a club

 by Vikram Dodd

A golfer who beat a fellow player around the head with an eight iron after an outbreak of “golf rage” was today jailed for nine months.

Harold Stafford, a psychiatric nurse, launched the attack on Barry Barnes after he accused him of playing his ball at a golf course in Luton.

During his trial at Luton crown court, Stafford claimed he acted in self-defence after Barnes had racially abused him.

The court heard that he began shouting at Barnes, accusing him of playing his ball. The argument intensified, and as Barnes turned his back to walk away, Stafford took an eight iron and began beating the golfer about the head.

The father-of-two knocked Barnes to the ground and continued his assault, hitting and kicking him, leaving him with bruising to his eyes, cuts and bruises to his chest, and bruising to his back and arms.

Stafford was convicted of actual bodily harm with the judge praising his previous good character and service to the community as he passed sentence.

Claudette Elliott, prosecuting, said: “This is a golf rage incident that occurred on 19 September 2008.

“The defendant was there with two of his friends and there was a misunderstanding about a ball that had gone astray.

“He felt that Mr Barnes had played his ball and he hit Mr Barnes with a golf club, causing it to break.

“Mr Barnes suffered quite serious injuries. He had two black eyes, his right eye puffed up to the size of a golf ball and his left eye was almost closed.

“The defendant has made it clear that golf is his passion. He said: ‘I love to play golf and I would play every day if I could. I also understand that golf is a game of integrity and honour.'”

[ click to read full article at The Guardian ]

Posted on July 15, 2009 by Editor

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