Man sentenced to hospital order over vicious Sheffield flat attack that left victim with one eye

A ‘dangerous’ Sheffield man who carried out a vicious and prolonged attack on two people, one of whom lost an eye as a consequence, has been sentenced to a hospital order.

Friday, 5th July 2019, 5:32 pm
Updated Friday, 12th July 2019, 1:23 pm

The incident took place after defendant, Arron Sharp, called round to the Sheffield flat where both complainants were, Sheffield Crown Court heard today.

“The defendant arrived and he appeared angry. He struck the first complainant,” said Richard Sheldon, prosecuting.

He added: “He dropped an amplifier on his head, and followed this up by kicking him in the ribs while he was on the floor.”

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Sharp was sentenced during a hearing held at Sheffield Crown Court on Friday, July 5

The second complainant attempted to intervene, which is when Sharp, 35, turned his attention to him, the court heard.

Mr Sheldon said: “He [Sharp] smashed a mirror and then a bottle on his head. He put the bottle neck in the face of the second complainant.

“One of the blows [with the bottle] went into his right eye socket and punctured his eye ball.

“He described being hit by the defendant 50 times.”

The first complainant suffered a fractured eye socket, 10 fractured ribs, lung injuries, a laceration to his liver and bruising.

The second complainant had surgery to the eye Sharp punctured in the attack, but medics were unable to save it and he lost his eye.

He also suffered cuts to his hands that were regarded to be ‘defensive injuries’.

The incident took place in November 2015, but Sharp was not deemed to be ‘fit’ to enter a plea until earlier this year due to suffering from schizophrenia.

He pleaded guilty to two counts of Section 18 wounding at an earlier hearing.

Sharp has been receiving treatment in a secure mental health facility since the incident took place, and the court heard how two forensic psychiatrists have concluded that the most appropriate sentence would be a hospital order, due to the continued treatment he requires for his condition.

Defendants can be sentenced to a hospital order instead of custody if they have a mental health condition that requires extensive treatment in hospital.

Judge Peter Kelson QC said he regarded Sharp to be a ‘very dangerous’ man, and if he was fit to be sentenced to custody he would have jailed him for ‘10, or it could even be 12, years’.

Richard Barradell, defending, said: “I would submit he can’t be, and shouldn’t be, sentenced to what he would have got in 2015, given that he has already served the equivalent of an eight year sentence.”

Judge Kelson sentenced Sharp to a Section 37 hospital order and to a Section 41 restriction order without limitation, under the Mental Health Act 1983.

In order for a Section 41 restriction order to be imposed, the sentencing judge must be satisfied doing so is necessary to protect the public from serious harm.

Judge Kelson said he was satisfied this criteria had been met in Sharp’s case.

Under the order, Sharp will not be able to leave hospital unless he is given permission by the Ministry of Justice or a tribunal, and he may be subject to a strict set of conditions if he is ever released.