Man jailed for an unprovoked and repeated attack in a Leamington street which left his victim with a potentially fatal head injury

After he was granted bail, he went back and attacked the victim once again

Tuesday, 16th February 2021, 9:13 am
Updated Tuesday, 16th February 2021, 9:14 am

A Leamington man was left with a potentially fatal head injury after being subjected to an unprovoked and repeated attack in the street.

And after Luke Kyberd was granted bail, despite having later threatened a witness, he launched a second assault on the same victim, a judge at Warwick Crown Court has heard.

Kyberd (26) of Lambourn Crescent, Leamington, was jailed for a total of four-and-a-half years after pleading guilty to inflicting grievous bodily harm, attempting to pervert the course of justice and assault.

Luke Kyberd

Prosecutor Ian Windridge said Kyberd’s victim was a young man who had autism and suffered from learning difficulties, and who lived in supported accommodation in Leamington.

In August 2019 Kyberd was helping his brother move a sofa into a flat when the young man came over and said hello, at which Kyberd accused him of being ‘a f***ing grass.’

Kyberd punched the 19-year-old hard to the head, knocking him into a nearby bush, and then rained four or five more punches at him before his brother pulled him away.

The victim got up and began to walk away, but Kyberd ran after him, grabbed him by the throat and hit him again before being pulled away for a second time.

The young man went to a friend's home on the Sydenham estate, where he spent the night.

But when he returned to the supported accommodation the next day he was unsteady on his feet and slurring his words, although there was no sign he had been drinking.

He was taken to hospital where he was found to have suffered a temporal extradural hematoma – a bleeding between the skull and the brain.

And surgeons said it had ‘the potential to be fatal’ if he had not undergone emergency surgery to relieve the pressure on his brain, pointed out Mr Windridge.

Two days later Paul Kyberd’s girlfriend, who had seen the attack, was on her way to work when Kyberd approached her and threatened that if she or his brother made statements to the police there would be ‘consequences.’

When Kyberd was arrested he first gave his brother’s details and then, when he was later interviewed, claimed it was him who had carried out the attack.

In September last year, on bail after he had appeared in the crown court and was awaiting trial after pleading not guilty, Kyberd was out in breach of his electronically-tagged curfew.

During that time to Kyberd attacked his victim once again, this time in Newbold Comyn where he punched him, knocking him into some bushes.

Putting his hands round the young man’s throat, Kyberd said he did not want to go to prison and warned him not to tell the police or they would come after him again.

But the attack was reported, and when the victim was taken to hospital it was at first thought he had a fractured eye socket, but an x-ray established there was no new fracture.

Mr Windridge said that Kyberd had previous convictions for offences including assault and robbery.

Simon Hunka, defending, said Kyberd, the youngest of seven children, also had learning difficulties and was found to suffer from social anxiety disorder and an emotionally unstable personality disorder.

“One aspect of that is a tendency to act impulsively without any consideration of consequences. He cannot navigate his way around life as most members of the population can.”

Mr Hunka said that while on bail Kyberd had moved to Lincoln with his girlfriend, who had given him a degree of stability, but in the summer of last year he woke to find she had passed away during the night.

He returned to Leamington, which he has since described as his biggest mistake, and ‘returned to his negative ways.’

Jailing Kyberd, Judge Barry Berlin told him: “You set about him in a violent drunken rage. Your brother pulled you off... but you had not had enough, and you attacked him again.

“He had an inter-cranial bleed which could have been fatal but for prompt medical intervention.

“You have emotionally unstable personality disorder. That suggests dangerousness, rather than anything else, because it makes you more impulsive.”