Drunk mum punched schoolgirl after snowball incident

Burnley Magistrates Court.
Burnley Magistrates Court.
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A drunk single mum smashed a schoolgirl’s nose after a snowball the child had thrown hit a car the woman was travelling in.

Burnley Magistrates’ Court heard how Hayley Elizabeth Bennett (23) walked over to the 13-year-old and said: “What do you think you’re playing at? My kids could have been in the car. You could have killed us.”

The mother-of-two then punched the girl in the nose and added: “you have got more coming,” before getting back in the car, which was driven off.

The teenager had suffered a displaced fracture, had to have surgery, and was left having headaches and nose bleeds after the violence in January.

Bennett, who has never been in trouble before, admitted assault by beating in Burnley.

The defendant, of Belmont Grove, Burnley, could have been facing jail, but was sentenced to a 12 week curfew, on Mondays to Thursdays, between 8pm and 7am. The part-time barmaid was ordered to pay £500 compensation to her victim.

Bench chairman Tony Winder said: “It was a serious injury and a vulnerable victim. You deliberately caused more harm than was necessary. You could have gone into custody. When you are drinking in future, I think you should be very, very careful.”

Prosecutor Andrew Robinson said the defendant was interviewed by police and said she had had a lot to drink.

Damien Pickup (defending) said: “She says the girl deliberately threw the snowball at the car. She says it was more like a block of ice and it landed on the windscreen on the driver’s side, causing an almighty bang.

“Unfortunately, what she did thereafter was regrettable. The red mist immediately descended and she admits she struck the girl because she was provoked and upset. This could have had drastic consequences if the children had been with her.”