PD Hoxton helps secure conviction of domestic violence offender
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A persistent police dog helped track down a domestic violence offender who was seen running from the police across fields in Peacehaven.
Lewes Response officers were called to a property at 8.40pm on October 11 last year after reports of a man seen bleeding and identified as a suspect in a domestic abuse incident.
When they arrived, they were unsure of the exact route taken by the suspect, but a flicker of light had earlier been seen in a field nearby.
So PD Hoxton, a two-year-old German Shepherd handled by PC Gareth Evers, was brought in to help locate him.
PC Evers said: “I was well briefed by the officers on scene, and although the exact route taken by the suspect was unknown, a flicker of light was seen about 200 metres into the field where it was believed the suspect had lit a cigarette among bushes.
“I kept PD Hoxton deployed on a lead because the search area was far too great and progress through a ploughed field was slow.
“Hox began to track naturally and took me through to a small clearing in the bushes, over a barbed wire fence and into a neighbouring field.
“He then indicated to me where the suspect was. It was pitch black but we found a suspect sitting in high grass.”
The suspect was Connor Graves, 26, of Central Avenue, Telscombe Cliffs, who was arrested.
Following an investigation by Eastbourne CID he was charged and at Brighton Magistrates’ Court on March 16 he admitted assault by beating, theft, and two counts of criminal damage.
The court heard how Graves had damaged the tyres of a vehicle and caused a wound to his hand while drunk. He then attended the address of a woman known to him.
Inside the property, he sprayed blood from the wound, causing further criminal damage.
He then assaulted the victim and then stole her mobile phone before leaving the scene before officers arrived.
Graves was ordered to complete mental health treatment and 20 rehabilitation activity requirement (RAR) sessions as part of a 20-week suspended prison sentence.
He was also ordered to pay a total of £726.80 in compensation to two victims as well as an £80 fine.
Following the case, PC Luke Williams said: “Graves caused the victim great distress during a frightening incident.
“He had seen her trying to call a neighbour for help and told her ‘don’t get me arrested’ before he left the address.
“This case demonstrates that we take reports of domestic abuse seriously, and we responded swiftly to track down a violent offender with the help of PC Evers and PD Hoxton.”
Violence against women and girls is widespread and everyone has a role to play to prevent it from happening.
We need people, specifically men, to:
• Challenge their own behaviours and recognise the impact this has on the victim and others e.g children in the household
• Challenge others behaviours
• Recognise that VAWG can manifest through other ways, such as misogyny
• Reflect on their thoughts and attitude if a female loved one/family member was subjected to such behaviour