Published: 18:26, 05 September 2017
A delivery driver put the lives of passing motorists at risk as he threw rocks at their cars “seemingly for his own amusement”, a court heard.
Over an eight-month period, Glynn Williams damaged 16 vehicles and caused injury to two drivers in an area about 11 by 11 miles in the “high weald” of Kent covering Cranbrook, Benenden, Biddenden, Rolvenden, Goudhurst and Sandhurst.
Each time 37-year-old Williams was making deliveries for Dartford-based United Parcel Service in the area in a brown transit van, a jury at Maidstone Crown Court was told.
“Our accusation against him is time and time again while doing his delivery driving in the TN17 and TN18 postcodes, he had the habit, for whatever reason, of throwing rocks at passing vehicles,” said prosecutor Alex Rooke.
“We are talking about 16 incidents. Two of those incidents, possibly three, led to injury. Only one was a static vehicle.”
Williams, of North Street, Dartford, denies 16 charges of damaging property being reckless as to whether life is endangered and two of assault causing actual bodily harm between January and August 2015.
“This case is not so much about damage to property, it is about the risk to life and limb. In plain English, somebody who throws a rock into a windscreen of a car coming in the other direction is basically well aware they will damage that vehicle, and maybe intending to do it, but there is a more serious aspect about not giving a hoot about the blindingly obvious.
“The blindingly obvious is if you throw a rock at somebody’s windscreen, they might swerve and hit a tree. Their life is endangered by somebody throwing these rocks.
“When they are doing this, they don’t care what the consequences are.”
Mr Rooke said the evidence against Williams was circumstantial. There were matters in common which cropped up.
“There came a point where there had been incidents of rock throwing in this high weald area,” he said. “Put two and two together and make four and the identity of Glynn Williams came up.”
Photos were taken of him and he was identified as the UPS driver for those postcodes
“We have witnesses coming forward several months later,” said Mr Rooke.
“They said they were driving past a brown vehicle and their windscreen was put in.
“There is a media appeal for people to come forward with their stories. There comes a point when lightning strikes too often in one place. We are looking at a large area.”
The court heard from several alleged victims.
Adam Rogers was driving his Vauxhall Tigra along Golford Road, Cranbrook, on July 22 when he passed a van and his screen shattered. He almost crashed. He was left with a minor cut to his hand.
The next day he round a rock on the back seat of his car and handed it to the police.
Jennie Ivinson was driving her Vauxhall Zafira along Golford Road, Cranbrook, on August 18. Her two children were in the back seat. As she passed a large vehicle travelling in the opposite direction she felt a blow to her face.
"The blindingly obvious is if you throw a rock at somebody’s windscreen, they might swerve and hit a tree. Their life is endangered by somebody throwing these rocks" - prosecutor Alex Rooke
She stopped and saw there was a hole in her screen and glass everywhere. She was bleeding and had a black right eye. She was taken to hospital. A rock was found in the back of her car.
The same day, Elizabeth Allen was in her Seat Altea driving from Hawkhurst to Sandhurst on the A268 with her children. She passed a van and heard a bang on her screen.
Claire Gaertner was driving her VW Up from Biddenden towards Sandhurst and as she passed an UPS van a “grey missile” shattered her screen.
About an hour later, Nicola Waite was in her VW Golf driving along Benenden Road when a brown vehicle passed and there was a loud bang before her screen cracked.
When arrested, Williams denied being the “UPS rock thrower” and claimed it was possible some local people had it in for him.
The prosecutor said it was interesting that Williams volunteered in interview that on 15 occasions he randomly found rocks in his vehicle.
He added he thought it might be local people putting the rocks in his van.
“You may find that a bit strange a bit of a red herring,” Mr Rooke told jurors.