Thorpe Morieux man cleared of alleged assault in seaside town

Ipswich Crown Court
Ipswich Crown Court

A man from Thorpe Morieux has been cleared of an allegation that he assaulted another man in a Suffolk seaside town.

Martyn Bell, 53, of Bury Road, denied assault causing actual bodily harm during an incident on the promenade at Felixstowe on April 20 last year.

Today (Friday) at Ipswich Crown Court, a jury took less than an hour to find him not guilty.

During the trial the court heard allegations that Mr Bell pushed electrician Lewis Peters off the promenade and struck him on the head with a drill Mr Bell was holding. It was claimed that the alleged assault left Mr Peters with two cuts to his head for which he was treated at hospital.

When interviewed by police, Mr Bell denied pushing Mr Peters off the promenade but said he struck him with the drill in self-defence because Mr Peters came towards him ‘like a raging bull’.

Mr Bell said that as Mr Peters approached, he feared for his life.

The incident began when there was a confrontation between the two men at a block of flats in Granville Road, Felixstowe, said Joanne Eley, prosecuting.

Miss Eley said Mr Peters went to investigate banging noises coming from a flat close to the home of his girlfriend’s mother and had been worried that someone was attempting to barricade themselves in as a squatter.

After asking Mr Bell what he was doing, Mr Peters tried to detain him until police arrived but was pushed aside and the incident moved out onto the nearby promenade where the alleged assault took place.

Later, Mr Bell explained to police officers that the flat belonged to him and he had been cleaning it in readiness for sale.

Cross examined, Mr Peters denied that he was the aggressor but accepted that after allegedly being struck with the drill, he may have punched Mr Bell.