Single mum was recorded making threats on phone

The defendant appeared at Skipton Magistrates' Court

The defendant appeared at Skipton Magistrates' Court

First published in News

A single mother with a “propensity to violence” was recorded on a mobile phone making threats, Skipton magistrates heard.

Amanda Jones, 33, was taped by her neighbour in Hillside Road, Low Bentham, threatening his wife and telling him his days were numbered, the court heard.

It was alleged Jones also spat at Rachael Johnson while she was in Main Street, Bentham, with her teenage daughter. Mrs Johnson told the court she had continued on her way to Barclays Bank, but had been upset and shaken. Her fleece jacket had been covered in spittle.

Jones, who had two previous convictions for assault on former neighbours, was found guilty of one count of using threatening words or behaviour and one of assault by beating. In the afternoon of August 13, an argument had taken place between Paul Johnson and Jones, who had been struggling to fix the roof mechanism on her classic BMW convertible.

Mr Johnson, who had been sitting in his front garden playing on his mobile phone, stopped what he was doing and recorded the exchanges between him and his next-door neighbour.

In the recording, which was played in court, Jones was heard shouting and swearing and telling Mrs Johnson she would “mess her up” if she found her on her own. The recording also included Mrs Johnson telling Jones she was “mad”.

Mr Johnson, who told the court that Jones had earlier told him she would shoot him and firebomb the house, said he felt threatened by his neighbour’s words and actions.

Jones denied threatening to shoot Mr Johnson and said she was stating a fact that his days were numbered because he worked in motorway maintenance. She described Mrs Johnson as an “idiot” and a “fish wife” but her husband as “more sensible”.

Keith Blackwell, defending Jones, said the Johnsons had provoked her because they were taping what she said.

He added there had been no evidence offered that Jones had spat at Mrs Johnson in Bentham on October 7 and CCTV footage from the inside of the bank showed Mrs Johnson to be undeterred.

But prosecutor Hilary Reece described Jones as a volatile woman who had a propensity to be violent, particularly against her neighbours. She also accused Jones of making some outrageous comments about the police officer who had arrested her following the assault.

“This is absolutely a volatile lady as evidenced in court and on tape,” said Mrs Reece. The mother of two young children protested following the decision of the magistrates, accusing them of leaving her family homeless. Sentencing was adjourned until February 7 for reports.

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