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Sevenoaks builder left footprint on victim's shoulder in vicious attack

A building firm boss who "mercilessly" beat up a neighbour in a row over a disputed £100 debt, mouthed the word "wow" after being given an eight year jail term for the attack

Builder Russell Walton had been convicted of causing grievous bodily harm to former workmate and neighbour Robert Seal.

Russell Walton
Russell Walton

The jury had heard during the unprovoked attack - which was caught on CCTV - the victim's partner stood guard over his battered body.

She watched in terror as Walton wielded an axe after stamping on her lover's body.

Under new laws dad-of-two Walton, 45, of The Crescent, Sevenoaks will now have to serve two-thirds of the sentence before being released - rather than the usual half.

Judge Philip Statman told Walton - who had denied the GBH with intent and possessing an axe in public: "Within seconds of you two meeting, you head butted him before proceeding to drag him to the ground where you repeatedly kicked him and stomped on his head and body mercilessly.

"In my judgment, in those moments, you completely lost your self-control.

"This was a grave, unprovoked attack. The violence was all one way..."

"When your victim's girlfriend tried to shield, you went back to your van and picked up and axe.

"This was a grave, unprovoked attack. The violence was all one way. Your victim did absolutely nothing to in anyway provoke you."

So savage was the attack, that the thug left a footprint from his steel-capped boot on the victim's shoulder as he threatened: "I will end his life".

The judge told him he had watched the CCTV and watched him give evidence but couldn't detect "one hint of remorse"

Walton remain impassive during the sentencing hearing at Maidstone Crown Court until he was told he faced eight years and would have to be locked away for five years and four months before he could be released. He then mouthed "wow" before being led away by security guards.

Judge Philip Statman said: "Your victim did absolutely nothing to in anyway provoke you." Picture: Steve Crispe
Judge Philip Statman said: "Your victim did absolutely nothing to in anyway provoke you." Picture: Steve Crispe

Earlier Mr Seal told how his wrist was broken and he received head injuries in the "vicious, sudden attack" in April.

He told the jury: "We had spoken on the phone regarding what he said was £100 I owed him, which was incorrect, over a fencing job.

"He told me to come outside as he had my trowel for me and I went out into the street. I think it was at that point he hit me on my head. It was pretty severe."

Mr Seal said he recalled being pulled and then hit repeatedly to the back of his head "anywhere between 10-20" times"

"One of the blows broke my right wrist and afterwards I suffered memory loss and slow speech and I stammer and stutter. Something I never had before."

Maidstone Crown Court
Maidstone Crown Court

He said he heard his girlfriend screaming: "Get off him, get off him..leave him alone" as Walton told her to "get out of the way"

As Mr Seal came round he saw his girlfriend standing between him and Walton "and he was trying to get around her."

Walton - who has run R A Walton and Sons for 25 years - had claimed he had been defending himself but the jury rejected his account of the one-sided fight.

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