Vicious Littlehampton attack nearly ended with a murder

Tony Cocks,35, of Windward Close, Littlehampton, has been jailed for five years SUS-141208-161122001
Tony Cocks,35, of Windward Close, Littlehampton, has been jailed for five years SUS-141208-161122001

A STEPFATHER who nearly killed a man after he tried to urinate in his garden has been jailed for five years.

Tony Cocks, 35, of Windward Close, Littlehampton, brutally attacked Walter Jones, 55, after chasing him down the street.

Following his guilty plea to causing grievous bodily harm with intent earlier this year, judge Christopher Parker QC watched shocking CCTV footage at Chichester Crown Court on Tuesday (August 12) showing Cocks repeatedly holding Mr Jones down and punching him in the face and kicking him.

“You chased him off and at that point when he fell you appear to have lost all sense of reason or self control – and not just for a moment but several minutes,” Judge Parker told Cocks.

“The CCTV shows that you beat him while he was on the ground. You held him with one hand and continued to punch him – upwards of 20 blows around his head.”

Judge Parker added Cocks kicked Mr Jones repeatedly with his shod foot, which is classed a weapon.

He went on to say: “The film that you’ve seen is entirely consistent with the type of film one sees when someone has been murdered.

“If he had died you would no doubt have been charged and convicted of murder.”

Cocks only stopped the onslaught after a woman shouted at him from a nearby house and he fled.

Mr Jones’ injuries included a fractured cheek, extensive bruising to the face and eyes and bleeding from his ear.

However, the worst injury was bleeding on the brain, described in court as ‘life threatening’.

Judge Parker said there were psychological impacts from the attack, with Mr Jones afraid to go out in public. The assault happened around midnight on April 4 this year.

Speaking in mitigation, Rachael Lane said Cocks believed the stranger had entered his garden with a more ‘sinister purpose’.

She described Cocks as ‘ashamed and genuinely remorseful’ about what he had done. The court heard Cocks lived at home with his partner and her six-year-old daughter. Judge Parker credited Cocks for his guilty plea, jailing him for five years and four months. He described the attack as ‘wholly out of character’.

Cocks will serve half his sentence in prison before being released on licence.