Judge who hit wife walks free free

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A JUDGE who hit his coroner wife during a row was told during his sentencing hearing “you are no longer the master, you are a servant”.

The comment was made to Deputy High Court Judge James Allen QC by fellow judge Daphne Wickham as she put him on probation for assaulting his wife Melanie at their home in Woolley.

Allen, 61, and his wife, who is a deputy coroner in West Yorkshire, both claimed during a trial that her injuries were self-inflicted.

Mrs Allen, 44, claimed she had been so frustrated during a “heated” argument she had punched herself in the face in a desperate bid to stop her husband leaving home.

But Judge Allen was found guilty of common assault last month. He returned to Bradford Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday where he was sentenced to 12 months of supervision. He was also ordered to pay £5,000 costs.

Mrs Wickham said Allen had “snapped” after arguing with his wife in February last year and was annoyed when she wouldn’t let him leave. She told him: “Rather like a sprung coil you became irritable.”

He claimed he was trying to get his car keys when his wife punched herself in the face three times – a version she backed up but this was refuted by a medical expert.

Mrs Wickham described Mrs Allen’s injuries as “dangerous and unpleasant, although not long-lasting”.

Discussing the affect of the conviction on Allen’s career, Mrs Wickham said: “I also must accept the effects on you both personally and professionally is profound and that is punishment, I am sure you will think, in itself.”

Allen refused to comment on whether he would appeal. He has been referred to the Office for Judicial Complaints following his conviction.