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Morning wake up call led to assault

By UttoxeterPostandTimes.3522974.UttoxeterPostandTimes  |  Posted: January 05, 2014

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A VIOLENT prisoner attacked a jail officer in Marchington – all because he had woke him up, a court has heard.

Convict Daniel Matthews went for warden Colin Butler after he opened the hatch of his cell at Dovegate Prison.

In the struggle that followed, Mr Butler suffered a serious cut above his left eye.

This was later sutured with six stitches at the hospital.

One of his colleagues, Christopher Nicholls went to the aid of Mr Butler and was also hit by the 21-year-old in the process.

He then helped to restrain the defendant, said Paul Spratt, prosecuting.

Stafford Crown Court heard that Matthews was serving a five-and-a-half year sentence imposed by Wolverhampton Crown Court for inflicting grievous bodily harm with intent.

He also had a record for other crimes of violence.

Matthews admitted assaulting Mr Butler causing him actual bodily harm and common assault on his colleague.

The judge handed him a further 12 months jail sentence to run on top of his current term.

David Iles, defending, said Matthews, of Wolverhampton, had stopped taking anti-depressants because they made him drowsy, but was having difficulty sleeping as a result.

On the day of the assaults, the court heard Mr Butler made a clattering noise with the hatch.

Mr Iles said: “When the defendant left his cell, he thought his repose had been deliberately disturbed and that upset him.

“He has paid the price – he is now in Long Lartin, the country’s maximum security prison, rubbing shoulders with those who will never be released.”

However, Judge Nicholas Dean QC told Matthews: “No doubt it is the case that on July 24 last year, you felt provoked.

“But whether you felt yourself provoked or irritated, that does not excuse your response.

“You are now subject to a regime much more harsh than the one at Dovegate.”

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