Support worker dragged unconscious Castleford resident onto street after pushing him down concrete steps, court is told

A support worker for a Castleford hostel for addicts threw a nuisance resident down a flight of concrete steps, before dumping his motionless body on the roadside to cover up the incident , a court was told.

Wednesday, 2nd September 2020, 4:25 pm
Updated Wednesday, 2nd September 2020, 4:46 pm
Reflections Housing Association in Castleford.

Deon Ballard warned he would throw the victim down the steps outside the Reflections Housing Association building on Station Road before carrying out the threat.

He then dragged the unconscious victim off the premises and tried to clear up the blood.

Ballard appeared at Leeds Crown Court today where he admitted causing grievous bodily harm.

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CCTV footage was shown of the incident from the early hours of April 6, 2019.

Prosecuting, Katy Varlow, said that the victim had been a resident at the property as part of a drug treatment programme, but had been evicted.

The victim had returned to the hostel in the middle of the night under the influence and was trying to gain entry for three hours and making a nuisance of himself, even trying to climb a ladder to get through a window.

Ballard, a recovering addict himself who ran programmes at the hostel and often stayed overnight, told the victim to leave several times and threatened to call the police.

The victim eventually rang the front door bell which Ballard answered.

Miss Varlow said: "Although he (the victim) was being a pain, he was not being aggressive or violent. He said he wanted to get his phone."

CCTV audio picked up Ballard saying: "Get the f*ck gone before I throw you down the f*cking stairs."

He is then seen shoving him down the flight and the victim laying motionless on the floor.

The court was then told that Ballard moved the unconscious man towards the main road and then tried to clear up the blood.

It was not until 40 minutes later that Ballard finally called the emergency services.

The man had suffered several facial fractures, a brain haemorrhage that required surgery and spent time in intensive care.

Ballard aroused suspicion due to inconsistencies in his story, but after the CCTV was reviewed he made a full admission.

He said he had only intended to push him away and panicked when he realised the injuries were serious.

The court was told that Ballard had at least 10 previous convictions for violence, including two for ABH, two for battery and one for wounding.

Mitigating, James Littlehales said that Ballard's violent past stemmed from his own addiction to drink and drugs, but four years ago he turned his life around.

He had since started his own building firm and was described by colleagues as "honest, trustworthy and hard working".

He was also a primary carer for his grandson and said he was genuinely remorseful for his actions that night.

Judge Mushtaq Khokhar said: "You were trusted by Reflections Housing Association to become a support worker.

"What you did that night was not just thuggish behaviour but also you betrayed the trust of those who had put you in that position.

"You concede that the complainant was a pain in the neck but it's quite clear at the time of the incident he was not being threatening.

"But you were having none of that. You did precisely what you threatened to do.

"You left him unconscious for 40 minutes. He could have died."

Ballard, of Margaret Street, Immingham in North East Lincolnshire, was jailed for 14 months.