Man attacked patient who mumbled at him

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A man has been jailed for attacking a fellow patient at the Princess Royal Hospital.

Ashley Malcolm Jones, 52, of Lewes Road, Lindfield, pleaded guilty to the common assault of a 93-year-old manat the hospital in Haywards Heath.

Sussex Police said the assault happened while the offender and victim were patients in Balcombe Ward, an acute medical and cardiac ward.

A police spokesperson said: “During the early hours of Boxing Day it appears the offender took exception to mumbling from the other patient, grabbed him round the neck and shook him.”

Sussex Police said the victim died in early January but the coroner was satisfied that a post mortem examination had shown no link between the assault and his death.

Jones appeared before Crawley Magistrates’ Court on August 21 and was sentenced to six weeks’ in jail. The incident took place on Boxing Day (26 December 2013).

A spokesperson for Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals Trust, which runs the hospital, said: “Our hospital does not tolerate any type of crime and all incidents are investigated and reported to the police. We have preventative measures in place across all our hospital sites, including on site in-house security officers, CCTV and access door controls. All staff receive advice and training on maintaining hospital security.

“We liaise closely with the police with regard to investigation of crimes and routinely provide all the evidence required, through our internal investigative procedures, to allow the police to charge individuals with those offences.”