Man suffered life-threatening brain injury in Norfolk farm attack

King's Lynn Crown Court

King's Lynn Crown Court - Credit: Chris Bishop

A 74-year-old man suffered a life-threatening brain injury after he was struck by a farm worker who lost his temper after his tractor was moved in a field, a court has heard.

Liam Simpson, 38, turned up for work at a farm at Wells-next-the-Sea to find his tractor, and the keys, had been moved by the father of the defendant's employer.

King's Lynn Crown Court heard Simpson was "very irate" and started "shouting and balling" down the phone at his employer.

Ian James, prosecuting, said there was no argument between him and Simpson but that the defendant had "simply lost his temper".

The victim was "hit in the face" by Simpson and fell and hit his head on the ground.

He was bleeding and managed to drive home before his condition deteriorated and he was taken to hospital.

Mr James said it was fortunate he was taken to hospital as it was discovered he had suffered a bleed on the brain.

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He said it was a "life-threatening injury" adding had the victim not received medical treatment "quickly he may well have died".

As a result of the "severe traumatic brain injury" the victim suffered he remained at Addenbrooke's Hospital in Cambridge for 10 days.

Simpson, of Hills Close, Sporle, near King's Lynn, appeared at court on Tuesday (April 5) having previously admitted inflicting grievous bodily harm following the incident on October 28, 2019.

Recorder Justin Rouse said it was "right to say the victim's condition was life-threatening" but accepted the defendant had not intended to hurt the victim and that it had been a short-lived attack in which no weapons were used.

He imposed a six-month prison sentence, suspended for two years.

Simpson must also do up to 10 days' Rehabilitation Activity Requirement (RAR) over the next 12 months, undertake 120 hours of unpaid work and pay £2,000 compensation.

Lynne Shirley, for Simpson, said the defendant accepts the injuries were caused but insisted there was an argument and the complainant was in his face.

Miss Shirley said her client said he clenched his fist and "pushed the complainant forcefully" but denies punching him.

She added: "It was a momentous, spontaneous and brief" incident after which Simpson has expressed "remorse and genuine regret".