Man hurled piece of concrete at his mum's car after row

Burnley Magistrates' Court

Burnley Magistrates' Court

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A disgruntled son lobbed a piece of concrete through his mum's car window, stuck two fingers up at her house and shouted abuse - just as an off-duty police officer drove past.

Ashley Pickering (27) who had just been thrown out by the victim after a row, was arrested, but claimed that's what he wanted as he had nowhere to go.

Burnley magistrates were told how Pickering did get himself a bed and meals as he wished - but only for one night. He spent 24 hours in the cells, but wouldn't be jailed for the offence and he was released after appearing before the bench. The defendant had no previous convictions.

Pickering who described himself as "homeless" to the court, admitted causing £100 damage to the Fiat Punto, belonging to his mother Louise Pickering, on October 11th. He was given a 12-month conditional discharge and must pay £100 compensation, £85 costs and a £20 victim surcharge.

The bench chairwoman told him: "I hope you have seen the error of your ways. Your mother might be able to help you if you change your attitude and don't damage her property."

Prosecutor Mrs Tracy Yates told the court the off-duty officer was on his way to work, driving along Padiham Road, towards Burnley, at 8-30am.

She continued: "He saw a male walk to the back of the Fiat Punto and throw a piece of concrete through the rear window, causing it to smash. It landed on the rear parcel shelf. He then stuck two fingers up and shouted at the house."

Mrs Yates said the officer stopped and got out to speak to the defendant and ask him what was going on. He replied :" It's my mum's car . She has just thrown me out and I have nowhere to go." Pickering was arrested by on-duty patrols, showed no remorse and said he wanted to be arrested as he had nowhere to go.

Mark Williams, in mitigation, said Pickering had been living and working in Kendal. He had come back to Burnley as he had children there and had the promise of a flat and work.

The solicitor continued: "It seems that's not worked out and he has found himself in a position where he has no income and nowhere to live."

Mr Williams said the defendant had been to his mum's. He went on: "It seems she decided he has got a problem with the misuse of drugs - which he says is completely untrue - and she doesn't want him there."

The solicitor added: "She has thrown him out. He accepts in temper, in frustration he picked up a piece of concrete and smashed the window with it. He took the view at the time, 'Well, lock me up. At least I will have somewhere to sleep for the night.' Of course, that's not going to happen."