Jail for driver who backed into victim in Menston pub row

Wharfedale Observer: Simon Waters Simon Waters

An Otley businessman who used a car as a weapon to deliberately reverse into a man in a pub car park has been jailed.

Simon Waters, 40, crushed David Emsley between the vehicle and railings, fracturing his ribs.

The car had been taken without consent.

Bradford Crown Court heard that Waters, a car valeter, had used the Ford Galaxy, which the owners had paid to be parked at Leeds Bradford Airport and valeted while they were on holiday, to move furniture for a relative and then drove to The Fox pub at Menston with his partner and children for a drink.

Jailing him for 21 months, Judge Jonathan Rose said: “It is entirely fortuitous Mr Emsley did not suffer serious injury.”

Waters, of Cross Green, Otley, was convicted last month of unlawful wounding, but cleared by a jury of wounding with intent.

He admitted a charge of aggravated taking of a vehicle without consent.

Prosecutor Ken Green said Waters was entrusted with the keys of two vehicles to be valeted, but on August 11 last year he had taken the Ford for his own use and driven to the pub where the offence took place.

There was a disagreement in the pub between Waters and Mr Emsley, which continued in the car park when they left.

Waters, who had previous convictions for dishonesty and one for causing actual bodily harm, dating back to 1998, effectively blocked in Mr Emsley’s vehicle and then reversed – catching the complainant’s hand, causing bruising and soreness.

He drove off but returned up to half an hour later and deliberately reversed into Mr Emsley, pinning him to the railings.

Judge Rose said one of the aggravating features was that Waters’ seven-year-old daughter and 21-year-old stepdaughter were in the back of the Galaxy at the time of the offence and were distressed.

The judge said: “Your reversing was deliberate, but you didn’t intend to cause really serious harm.”

Waters was disqualified from driving for two years and ordered to take an extended driving test.

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