Spurned boyfriend threatened to torch pub belonging to his ex’s mum

Chesterfield magistrates' court.
Chesterfield magistrates' court.

A spurned boyfriend threatened to burn down a pub owned by his partner’s mum after the couple had separated.

Chesterfield magistrates’ court heard on Thursday, July 5, how James Andrew Batty, 28, of Pullman Close, Staveley, told his former partner James Warner and his mum Anne Warner that he would arrange to have the Apollo pub, at Barlborough, torched.

Prosecuting solicitor Sarah Haslam said: “Mr Warner was in a relationship with this defendant. They separated on May 31. There had been issues with the complainant and the defendant in the relationship and Mr Warner decided the relationship was over.”

Mrs Haslam added that he went to the address he shared with this defendant to drop in keys and Batty became abusive while Mr Warner was trying to remove items.

Batty said he was going to set fire to the pub but he would not be stupid enough to do it himself, according to Mrs Haslam.

The court heard how James Warner manages the pub and it is owned by Anne Warner and her husband.

Mrs Warner confirmed Batty had said he was going to torch the pub and it would not be him who would be doing it.

She stated that she quickly got her son’s belongings into a car and left.

Mrs Warner described Batty as unpredictable and she felt scared about what he might do next.

James Warner stated there had been issues in the relationship and he had been fearful of separating and after Batty’s threat he had been sleeping at the Apollo to protect the pub.

Batty pleaded guilty to threatening Anne Warner he would set fire to the Apollo pub.

Defence solicitor Paul Green said Batty has mental health issues and he was not taking medication at the time of the incident.

The defendant’s case was adjourned for a probation report and he was sentenced on Friday, July 6, to eight weeks of custody suspended for 12 months with a Rehabilitation Activity Requirement and a two-year restraining order.

He was also ordered to pay a £115 victim surcharge and £85 costs.