A man attacked his partner when she failed to return to him to hand over money earned from selling sexual favours, a court has heard.
Robert Walsh found the woman, beat her up, and snatched the £35 from her bra. The woman had been selling sex on a busy city street in order to earn money for the pair to buy drugs.
Swansea Crown Court heard Walsh has a long history of offending including burglary, robbery, domestic violence, assaults on police officers, thefts, and inflicting grievous bodily harm. Ian Wright, prosecuting, said the robbery happened in the early hours of July 12 this year.
Walsh – who also goes by the name Robbie Williams – and his then-partner had gone out the previous evening to earn money to buy drugs with the woman working as a prostitute in St Helen’s Road in Swansea.
The court heard after every “engagement with a customer” the woman would return to Walsh, who was waiting nearby, and hand over the money.
However just after 1am the woman failed to return to Walsh after spending time with a client and instead went to lane near the YMCA building at the end of The Kingsway where she met a friend.
Mr Wright said Walsh believed his partner was going to keep the money or buy drugs for herself with it and went after her. When he found her he grabbed her by the hair and threw her to the floor, taking the £35 she had placed in her bra. The prosecutor said the attack was witnessed by a passerby who reported it to the police.
Officers were soon on the scene and found the intoxicated victim but she did not want to make a complaint and police took her home. Satisfied her partner did not have a key to her Waun Wen flat and the woman was able to lock herself in the property the officers left.
The court heard that a couple of hours later Walsh turned up at the property and the woman let him in. Once in the flat he dragged her to the floor, kicked her, and threw a pan of liquid – believed to be water – over her.
Mr Wright said Walsh was arrested at 3.20pm that day and when told he was being detained on suspicion of robbing his partner “he simply laughed at the officers”. In his subsequent interview he said regretted the incident had been witnessed by a passerby.
Walsh, 40, of Walter Road in Swansea city centre, admitted charges of robbery, common assault, and burglary. The burglary charge relates to an incident in the early hours of June 21 when the defendant smashed a display window at the Swansea Food Centre in High Street and took £1,300-worth of alcohol. He was linked to the break-in by blood left at the scene but wasn’t arrested for it until he was arrested in relation to the later robbery and assault.
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The court heard Walsh has an “extensive record of offending” stretching back some 25 years.
His record includes a conviction for attempted robbery after holding up a petrol station in Port Talbot armed with a hammer and a previous robbery where he raided another garage shop in Port Talbot claiming to have a gun. One of his the grievous bodily harm incidents on his record saw him shoot a man in the face with an air rifle from point-blank range while another had seen him severing a man’s fingers with a knife.
Dan Griffiths, for Walsh conceded his client had an “appalling record” of offending. He said that now the defendant was sober and free of drugs on remand in prison he realised that his behaviour towards his then-partner had been “disgraceful” and he wished to aplogise.
Giving the defendant a discount for his guilty pleas judge Christopher Vosper QC sentenced him to a total of four years and three months in prison of which he’ll serve up to half before being released on licence. The defendant stormed out of the prison video booth before he had chance to hear the judge say he would also be subject to a restraining order banning him from contacting his ex for the next five years.
-- to www.walesonline.co.uk