Laughing woman beater Justin Lee Collins escaped jail because he never tweeted his abuse
THEY say no publicity is bad. So. Give it up for TV presenter and comic Justin Lee Collins. The Times has a photo of Collins laughing minutes after a judge sentenced him to 140 hours of “humbling” community work. He must also pay the prosecution costs of £3,500. (The photo on the left is of him leaving court after the verdict.)
His crime? Well, his ex-lover, one Anna Larke, told St Albans Crown Court that Collins made her sleep facing him, spat at her, made her list every sexual encounter she had ever had. Collins said Ms Larke was a liar. Collins said he hit Larke to stop her from self-harming.
How did they meet? Collins had been having an extra-martial affair with Larke. They broke up. But after his marriage failed, Collins and Larke hooked up again. Their relationship went badly.
He was recorded telling her:
“You fucked up at the pub. When you’re fucking with me, you look at the fucking ground, you look at a tree, you look at a bench, you look at any fucking inanimate object, you do not look at any other fucking human being, you slag, do you understand?”
She said he got rid of any DVDs featuring men she might fancy.
Judge John Plumstead ruled:
“It would have been very much to your credit if you had had the courage to admit your violence against Ms Larke and for that you will pay the price.”
Yep. It’s community service. Take that!
Collins’ publicist says after the verdict was announced:
“Justin is extremely disappointed by the verdict. He will consider his position with his lawyers.”
Ms Larke’s brother said:
“We are absolutely ecstatic with the verdict and relieved the jury were able to see through the lies of an abuser. We will not rest on our laurels in the wake of this good news and intend to use this experience to empower women to stand up to domestic abuse. We are overwhelmed by the messages from people, inspired by Anna’s experience, who have left their abusive relationships.”
Collins got off lightly. Too lightly. Abuse in the home should be treated the same way as abuse in the street. Collins hit a woman. Spat at a woman in her face. Verbally abused her. If you saw him do that in the street once, what would you think? Now wonder life must be like living with someone who treats you like that.
Earlier this week, Matthew Wood was jailed for 12 weeks for writing a sick joke on Facebook about April Jones and Madeleine McCann. Liam Stacey was jailed for 56 days because he caused offence when he tweeted about Fabrice Muamba. Jordan Blackshaw, 20, and Perry Sutcliffe-Keenan, 22, were jailed for using Facebook to plan a riot. Samina Malik was given a nine-month suspended jail sentence for writing a poem. (She was later cleared.)
Justin lee Collins banned Anna Larke from using social media. He understands that words matter. The judges understand it too. The aforesaid examples show us that you can jailed for causing offence. Anna Larke told the court:
“It destroyed my life, everything I had. I had no confidence. I didn’t want to go out. I don’t want someone else to go through what I did.”
For that, Collins got community service.The Judge said:
“This is not a run-of-the-mill case of domestic violence. This was genuinely out of character.”
That depends if you’re the victim putting up with the pain before finally cracking. Collins was convicted of harassment causing fear of violence between January and July 2011. That’s out of character, is it? Seven months of abuse.
The judge is a pillock. The law is does not protect women…