Jail for teenager guilty of St Albans hotel wedding attack

PUBLISHED: 11:02 25 November 2009 | UPDATED: 14:41 06 May 2010

Sopwell House Hotel where the attack took place

Sopwell House Hotel where the attack took place

A 16-MONTH sentence has been handed down to a teenager convicted of a vicious attack on a wedding photographer at a luxury St Albans hotel in September last year. Charles Lovelock, 19, was ordered to serve half his sentence in a young offenders instituti

A 16-MONTH sentence has been handed down to a teenager convicted of a vicious attack on a wedding photographer at a luxury St Albans hotel in September last year.

Charles Lovelock, 19, was ordered to serve half his sentence in a young offenders' institution and the remainder on licence by Judge Stephen Warner in St Albans Crown Court this morning.

Judge Warner said he had taken into account Lovelock's age and previous good character but nevertheless he had been unrepentant and had ruptured his victim's bowel.

Lovelock, of Stevenage, had originally pleaded not guilty to causing grievous bodily harm to photographer and DJ Stephen Stacey at Sopwell House Hotel on September 19, 2008, but was convicted earlier this month.

Mr Stacey had been outside smoking a cigarette at around 11.15pm on September 19, 2008, after taking pictures of the family at a wedding celebration at the hotel.

He was attacked by Lovelock who was drunk and was found lying seriously injured in bushes outside the hotel.

Witnesses reported seeing Lovelock walking back into the hotel after the attack which left Mr Stacey seriously injured. Police described the assault as unprovoked.

Lovelock's room was subsequently searched and blood containing Mr Stacey's DNA was found on his clothes, bed sheets and shoes.

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