Former lifeboat man spared prison

York Crown Court
York Crown Court

A former lifeboat rescue volunteer has been given a suspended prison sentence for knocking a man unconscious following a street squabble.

James Posner, 36, struck the man with a mighty blow after the drunken victim had insulted his partner.

The incident happened near the junction of Somerset Terrace and Valley Bridge Parade, where Posner punched the man in the face but then used his experience as a former sea-rescue volunteer to put the victim in the recovery position.

York Crown Court heard that the bloodied victim suffered head injuries and was taken to Scarborough Hospital where medical staff glued his cuts and applied stereo strips. He also suffered an injury to his collarbone.

Prosecutor Peter Burn said: “Posner punched (the victim) once in the face with full force and he appeared to knock him unconscious. He then grabbed (the victim) by both shoulders, realised he was unconscious and put him down on the floor. The victim was badly injured and bleeding from the head.”

Posner, a surfer and gym-goer, was arrested and told police the victim had hurled insults at his partner and tried to get into her car after accusing her of blocking a pathway.

He admitted assault occasioning actual bodily harm, common assault and a Section 4 public-order offence in connection with the incident at 2.30pm on January 9.

Defence barrister Glen Parsons said Posner, of Granville Road, had served as a volunteer with Scarborough RNLI before starting freelance work on oil rigs.

In January 2013 he was given a suspended prison sentence for cultivating cannabis with a potential yield of £12,000 at his flat on Granville Road.

He appeared for sentence on the assault charges on Friday, when he was again spared an immediate prison stretch.

Posner was given a 12-month jail sentence, but this was suspended for two years. He will also have to complete 150 hours’ unpaid 

Judge Paul Batty ordered Posner to pay the victim £300 compensation, a reduced sum due to the man’s “reprehensible” behaviour leading up to the attack. Posner was also made to pay £500 costs.