Worksop rehab man punched church warden who tried to help him

A Worksop man lashed out at a church warden who tried to help him shortly after coming out of rehab, a court heard.

Friday, 30th November 2018, 4:28 pm
Updated Friday, 30th November 2018, 4:30 pm
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Andrew Merritt was bare-chested and drunk, with blood coming from his mouth, when the man asked if he was OK, on Watson Road, shortly after midnight, on September 21.

Merritt punched the man in the face, causing his lip to bleed, said prosecutor Robert Carr.

“He told officers he couldn’t remember doing it because he was drunk, and he was shocked and remorseful,” he said.

The court heard he failed to attend court on October 23, and also stole £75 of meat from Asda, on July 14.

Merritt’s most recent court appearance was in 2016 for a public order offence.

Pamela Coxon, mitigating, said he had a “long-standing” problem with alcohol and drugs, and had recently come out of a residential detox programme, in Rotherham.

“He thought he was doing well and he felt strong enough to go for a drink with his friends,” she said. “He was horrified the next morning and couldn’t explain it.

“At the time of the theft he was stealing to fund his addiction.”

She said Merritt’s father had died suddenly at the start of October, and he had been unable to face coming to court.

Merritt, 29, of Cheapside, admitted common assault, theft and failing to attend when he appeared at Mansfield Magistrates Court, on Friday.

The case was adjourned for Merritt to appear at Nottingham Crown Court in relation to a trial for a separate matter.

He was remanded in custody until December 7, when he will be sentenced.