Published: 09:15, 30 May 2017
A convicted killer who bit off part of a man’s ear and then mocked him by waving it about has been warned to expect a long jail sentence.
Ruben White, who has a previous conviction for manslaughter, left his victim Ian Hayward in need of reconstructive surgery following the attack in a residential street.
The 28-year-old, of no fixed address, denied wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm, but was convicted with Liam Hudson, 28, of Station Road, Rainham, on a joint enterprise basis.
Hudson’s partner, former House of Fraser beauty sales assistant Amelia Waters, 27, of the same address, was cleared of the charge but convicted of the lesser offence of unlawful wounding.
All three denied affray but were convicted. Hudson was acquitted of possessing an imitation firearm with intent to cause fear of violence.
The jury returned unanimous verdicts after deliberating for eight hours and 23 minutes.
Judge Philip Statman said of the wounding: “This is a grave offence and unfortunately it involves violence in the street with premeditation and use of a weapon, namely teeth.
“We have a very ugly injury which has occurred. It is going to be long sentences one way or the other.”
Maidstone Crown Court heard the violence erupted on November 2 last year following bad feeling toward’s Mr Hayward’s family over a previous road rage incident.
His son Samuel had been with his wife Charlotte South and their six-month-old child in their Mitsubishi Shogun driving along Richmond Road in Gillingham.
Prosecutor Peter Alcock said they passed Hudson standing by an Audi A3 driven by Waters. They followed the Shogun.
Samuel phoned his father, who was working at a house nearby, to tell him about the situation.
When Miss South stopped at traffic lights, Waters pulled alongside and shouted: “Don’t smile ------ ----, I will bite your ------ nose off.”
Miss South replied that they had a baby in the car and she should back off.
She then drove to Cavendish Avenue where Ian Hayward was working. She went into the house with the baby.
"This is a grave offence and unfortunately it involves violence in the street with premeditation and use of a weapon, namely teeth" - Judge Philip Statman
The car containing Waters, Hudson and White stopped in the middle of the road and all three got out carrying bats.
They approached Ian and Samuel Hayward and made a group attack on them with bleach being sprayed.
Ian Hayward told of being held face down over a car bonnet when he heard a crunching sound.
“I initially felt very little pain but I just heard like a crunching noise, like somebody eating cornflakes if you like,” he said.
White, formerly of Kingswood Road, Gillingham, then held up a piece of his right ear saying: ‘I have got a bit of your ------- ear.’
Adjourning sentence until July 10, Judge Statman ordered reports on White and Hudson to assess dangerousness. He also ordered a report on Waters.
White, who was jailed for three-and-a-half years in January 2011 for the single punch manslaughter of Lithuanian Saulius Klevinskas, 35, in Gillingham, was remanded in custody.
Hudson and Waters were granted conditional bail. Waters’ father posted a £20,000 surety for Hudson, who will also be subject to a tagged curfew from 6pm to 6am.
Waters will be under a curfew from 8pm to 8am. She and Hudson will also be subject to an “exclusion zone” around Cavendish Avenue.
Judge Statman said of White and Hudson: “It seems to me there is no alternative to a substantial custodial sentence.
“This is grave violence and it needs the defendants to understand if they go about doing these things in revenge attacks or otherwise, they are going to go to prison.
“There is a history. Lord only knows whether I have heard the whole of the history in this case.”