Pub customer strangled and battered after fall out with brothers, court hears

Kraig Owens. Picture: Devon and Cornwall Police

Kraig Owens. Picture: Devon and Cornwall Police - Credit: Devon and Cornwall Police

Kraig Owens admitted wounding with intent to cause grevious bodily harm and his brother Alvin Owens pleaded guilty to wounding and witness intimidation

Kraig Owens. Picture: Devon and Cornwall Police

Kraig Owens. Picture: Devon and Cornwall Police - Credit: Devon and Cornwall Police

A pub customer was strangled in a headlock and battered with an extendable baton after he fell out with two brothers in a pub.

Kraig and Alvin Owens followed a man into the toilets of the Duke of York pub, in Exeter, and carried out an apparently motiveless attack.

He was left with two cuts to his head after Kraig Owens pulled out the baton and hit him while his brother held him in a headlock.

Both brothers had been seen on CCTV chatting amicably with a man in the minutes before the attack, Exeter Crown Court was told.

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Kraig Owens, aged 28, of High Street, Crediton, admitted wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm.

Alvin Owens, aged 32, of Crowbridge Park, Crediton, admitted wounding and witness intimidation.

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A third man, Mark Langdon, aged 28, of Woodlands Court, Exmouth, was found not guilty of inflicting grievous bodily harm after the prosecution dropped the case against him.

Judge Peter Johnson adjourned sentence for a report to assess whether Kraig Owens should receive an extended jail term because he is a danger to the public.

He remanded him in custody and released Alvin Owens on bail.

Bathsheba Cassel, said the attack took place in the toilets of the Duke of York at 7.45pm on November 22, 2017.

A man went into the men’s toilets and was followed very shortly afterwards by Alvin Owens, who attacked him after a short argument.

Kraig went in and joined the attack. Mr Langdon followed them in but left immediately without getting involved in the violence.

Miss Cassel said: “It is not known what caused the change in mood between the parties but the victim’s hood was grabbed and he was told ‘you are dead’.”

She said Alvin Owens had his arm around his neck and the victim was struggling and telling him to get off. He then realised Kraig Owens was there and both men were trying to punch him.

Miss Cassel said: “They both made threats and Kraig took out an extendable baton and hit him over the head three or four times, causing deep wounds to his head.”

He needed hospital treatment and made a victim statement saying he is now too scared to go out on his own.

Almost a year later, in October 2018, the victim was on the phone to a mutual friend when he heard Alvin Owens in the background making threats and telling him to drop the charges.

Barry White and Simon Burns, defending, said both defendants had pleaded guilty on a basis which had been accepted by the prosecution.

Kraig said he went to investigate the argument between his brother and the victim but had not expected to get into a fight and had to intended any violence.

Alvin said the attack was not pre-meditated and he had no idea his brother was going to use a weapon during the fight.

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