Homeless man smashed up Worksop hostel after power cut killed his fish

Mansfield Magistrates Court
Mansfield Magistrates Court

A homeless man smashed up his room in a Worksop hostel after the electricity was cut off and his tropical fish suffocated, a court heard.

Ryck Cowood had been a resident for about eight weeks at Framework before a dispute with staff, on July 29, and he pulled blinds from the walls and damaged various electrical items.

In police interview he told officers staff switched off the electricity to his room after the row, said prosecutor Leanne Townshend.

Cowood, 26, care of Yeoman Close, Worksop, admitted causing criminal damage when he appeared before magistrates in Mansfield, on Monday.

The court heard he had seven previous convictions for the same offence, and was last in court in August 2015, for common assault.

Probation officer Greta Percival said Cowood had been drinking with friends and returned to the accomodation when drunk.

“For whatever reason the electricity was cut off to his room,” she said. “He could think of no reason why this would happen.

“He lost his temper. Due to the lack of electricity his fish were suffocating.”

Rebecca Williams, mitigating, said Cowood was currently sofa-surfing in the Worksop area, and he became angry after his fish died when the lights and air pump stopped working.

He was ordered to pay £80 compensation, but no costs were ordered.

He was given a 12 month community order, with five days of a rehabilitation activity, and 40 hours of unpaid work.