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Tia Lambert from Canterbury guilty of assaulting Rocksalt manager in Folkestone

By Aidan Barlow

A sofa surfer has been put under curfew and told to clean up her act after getting drunk and striking a restaurant manager in the face.

Tia Lambert, of Whitstable Road in Canterbury, appeared before Folkestone magistrates after being charged with the assault at the Rocksalt restaurant in January.

Prosecutor Rio Pahlavanpour said the 20-year-old, who was clad in a flowery red blouse, had become intoxicated when out with friends.

Tia Lambert was found guilty of assault but intends to appeal her conviction

Tia Lambert was found guilty of assault but intends to appeal her conviction

He said: "She became rowdy and abusive to staff and customers, so she was refused service and asked to leave. The victim tried to usher her to the door, and at that point Miss Lambert struck her to the face."

Judge Justin Barron added that Lambert, who is living in Porchlight hostel accommodation, also kicked and spat at the victim.

The victim said: "I have worked in hospitality for 27 years, and the language she used was the worst I have ever heard.

"I asked her politely to leave and didn't deserve that. Customers and staff shouldn't have to witness that kind of behaviour."

The assault took place at Rocksalt in Folkestone Harbour

The assault took place at Rocksalt in Folkestone Harbour

A probation service report said that Lambert, who was in court with her boyfriend, still denies the charge after having been found guilty in her absence.

She has suffered from mental health issues including anxiety, depression and bipolar disorder and has been signed off from work.

The employment support allowance claimant is currently applying for the Personal Independence Payment (PIP) benefit.

Judge Justin Barron has told her to clean up her act and complete a year-long community order which includes a rehabilitation requirement for her cannabis and alcohol use.

The case was heard at Folkestone Magistrates' Court

The case was heard at Folkestone Magistrates' Court

He said: "It was an unpleasant assault, nobody needs to be subjected to the sort of behaviour you have been found guilty of. It is serious enough to warrant a community order.

"I know of your intention to appeal but I am going to sentence you."

The judge also put her under curfew for eight weeks, where she must remain under tag at the hostel from 10pm to 8am daily. She must also pay court costs of £85, a victim surcharge of £300 and £100 in compensation.

Lambert, who is hoping to go to university, maintains her innocence and denies assault claiming she will be appealing the conviction.

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