Queensbury body-builder jailed for baseball bat attack on woman

Bradford Crown Court
Bradford Crown Court

A body-builder who launched a brutal baseball bat attack on his partner after she asked him for a contribution to their anniversary meal has been jailed for more than six years.

Luke Artis, then 20, lashed out at 41-year-old Tina Gillian in the bedroom of her Queensbury home and a judge told him today that he could have ended up killing her.

Bradford Crown Court heard how Miss Gillian asked Artis if he was going to contribute to the meal and he replied:’’You’re only bothered about money.’’

Prosecutor Robert Galley said Artis, who had drunk about eight pints and taken painkillers, then picked up the bat which was in the room and hit Miss Gillian on the forehead causing a wound which later needed five stitches.

The complainant fell to the floor and curled up in a ball as Artis then rained down at least five further blows with the bat.

Mr Galley said she suffered an open fracture to her left elbow and a broken finger as well as a black eye, bruising to her legs, ribs and back.

The court heard that Miss Gillian had to undergo an operation to wire up her damaged elbow and the attack in March had left her suffering anxiety, sleeplessness and flashbacks.

In her victim impact statement she described how the incident had left her feeling like ‘’a shell of her former self’’.

After his arrest Artis admitted that he had ‘’flipped’’ when he had been asked for the money and described the incident as ‘’a flash of rage’’.

Artis, who had no previous convictions, left the house after the attack, but he later surrendered himself to police and pleaded guilty at his first appearance before the crown court to a charge of wounding with intent to do grievous bodily harm.

He told police he had ‘’flipped’’ after being asked for the money and the incident was ‘’a flash of rage’’.

Barrister Nadim Bashir, for Artis, said although the couple’s relationship had its ups and downs there was no hint of any previous violence and he submitted that attack had been the result of a sudden loss of temper and control.

Mr Bashir said ‘’the red mist’’ had descended on his client and he accepted that Miss Gillian’s request for some money towards the meal appeared to be the catalyst.

He said Artis, now 21, of Calder Banks, Queensbury, realised that he faced a substantial prison sentence when he entered his guilty plea and he had prepared himself for that.

Today Judge Jonathan Rose jailed Artis for 80 months and also imposed an indefinite restraining order which bans him from having any contact with Miss Gillian.

The judge accepted that Artis had led a blame-free life up to the time of the offence, but he said he had also shown a propensity towards abusing alcohol.

Judge Rose dismissed any suggestion that Miss Gillian had driven Artis to commit the offence and he criticised the defendant for the suggestion in his pre-sentence report that Miss Gillian had broken her own arm after he left the property.

‘’For you to suggest after pleading guilty that the victim of this brutal crime caused one of the most serious injuries herself is truly unforgivable and demonstrates, far from you being remorseful for what you have done, you are more concerned with the outcome for yourself,’’ said Judge Rose.

The judge accepted that Miss Gillian may have been kicking out at Artis as he continued the attack, but he added:’’Perhaps she was (kicking you). So desperate was she to save her own life because Luke Artis what you did that night could so easily have killed her.

‘’This court will never accept the use of violence by a man against a woman in any way, shape or form. That is the starting point.

‘’The use of a weapon against a woman takes this into a whole different league.’’

Judge Rose said after Miss Gillian was incapacitated by the blow to the head she had curled up on the floor in a desperate attempt to protect herself from Artis’ onslaught.

‘’You know that this was, putting it very shortly, unprovoked, vicious, brutal, sustained and wholly without a shred of justification whatsoever,’’ the judge told Artis.

‘’There is no blame on her. There is only blame on you.’’