A 37-year-old woman who admitted a charge of affray arising out of an incident involving a fellow narrowboat owner on the canal at Elland has been sentenced to 14 months in prison suspended for a year.
Tracey Sykes, who had also pleaded guilty to causing criminal damage to her neighbour’s vessel and possession of a kitchen knife, will have to comply with a 30-day rehabilitation activity requirement as part of the sentence.
Bradford Crown Court was told at an earlier hearing that all three offences related to an incident back in April while she and the complainant Keith Newman were living on neighbouring narrowboats which were moored up near Elland Bridge.
Sykes, who has subsequently moved her vessel to another location, had been due to stand trial on the charges but she pleaded guilty to the offences after Judge David Hatton QC indicated that he would not send her to jail immediately.
Barrister Felicity Hemlin told the judge that at the time of the incident her client had a significant problem with crack cocaine but she had since sorted her life out.
“She doesn’t take crack cocaine and lives elsewhere on her narrowboat,” said Miss Hemlin.
Miss Hemlin said there had been background to the offending in April and her client had not been in any trouble with the courts since 2009.
During her sentence hearing today (Fri) prosecutor Tom Storey told Judge Hatton that Sykes’ recollection of the events was hazy.
She told police she had drunk too much rum and had taken crack cocaine that evening.
In a victim impact statement Mr Newman described how he was terrified that Sykes would attack him or his friend.
Mr Newman said he felt upset and disappointed because he had done a lot to help Sykes over the years.