Thursday, 29 January 2009

John Chisholm was found guilty witnesses gave evidence anonymously

John Chisholm was found guilty witnesses gave evidence anonymously for the first time in a North East courtroom.A jury was told how Robert Anderson suffered wounds to his chest, arm, leg and thumb after the BMW he was driving was ambushed in broad daylight by Chisholm in Hylton Road, Sunderland.Newcastle Crown Court heard that on May 24, 2007, Chisholm carried out the brutal assault in revenge for an earlier attempted shooting of his son, which Mr Anderson was accused of being involved in, but later cleared.
Chisholm snr denied wounding with intent, violent disorder and intimidation.The 49-year-old claimed he had been the victim of a "campaign of violence" by Mr Anderson and Alan Smart, who was the passenger in the BMW, and had lashed out after he saw a gun in the car.But jurors yesterday found him guilty of wounding with intent and violent disorder. He was cleared of the intimidation charge.
Speaking after the case, Sunderland's top police officer, Chief Superintendent Dave Pryer said: "Any criminal who considers themselves untouchable or above the law will certainly find no comfort in this city."Judge Tony Lancaster adjourned sentence until February 23 so Chisholm can be sentenced along with his son John Chisholm jnr, 27, and Carl Waters, 45, who admitted violent disorder at an earlier hearing in relation to the incident.
The judge ordered an assessment from the probation service of Chisholm snr's "dangerousness". The maximum sentence he faces is life.After the guilty verdicts, Detective Sergeant Paul Milner thanked the terrified witnesses, who saw the horror that day, for coming to court.The onlookers had been too afraid to come to court to give their evidence but were granted anonymity under new laws.


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