Family attacked in their own home after ex and new partner force their way in following row over children


A family were attacked in their own home after a mum and her new boyfriend turned up and kicked the front door down.

Rhiannon Moss, 21, and John Whittaker, 22, arrived at her ex’s home in Radcliffe, Bury, following a row over the two children she shares with him.

He and his brother were assaulted in the shocking attack.

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“This was a disgraceful and serious incident,” Judge Alan Conrad QC said.

“You were all intent on gaining access and forcing your way in.”

Moss’s ex had been looking after their young children at his home.

The couple had rowed about when they would be returned to Moss.

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Moss, who had split with her ex, had video called her ex’s new partner earlier that morning, and she had put Moss’ children onto the call.

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She asked if the children would be returning on the date which had been agreed, Manchester Crown Court heard.

After being told that they wouldn’t be, Moss phoned her ex’s new partner.

Moss said that she and Whittaker would come to their house, ‘kick the door off’, then ‘beat them up’ and take the children, prosecutor Brian Berlyne said.

Rhiannon Moss leaving court

The pair, along with Whittaker’s 18-year-old cousin Ryan Hancock, arrived at about 10.30am on February 20 last year.

Moss asked if she could come in to talk, with her ex’s new partner telling her she’d called the police.

The three defendants then kicked at the front door until it was ‘forced open’.

Hancock and Whittaker attacked the brother of Moss’s ex’s new partner.

Hancock punched him three times on the nose, while Whittaker kicked him to the side of the head.

He was put in a headlock, and Hancock punched him three more times, before Whittaker elbowed him.

They followed Moss upstairs to where the children were.

John Whittaker received a suspended prison sentence

Her ex and new partner tried to barricade the door but it was ‘kicked off its hinges’.

Whittaker punched Moss’s ex and grabbed him in a headlock.

Prosecutors said Moss and Hancock also punched him. Moss denied striking a blow.

The victim was kicked in the ribs, and he fell to the floor as he was further punched and kicked.

Moss pulled his new partner’s hair, as she tried to comfort one child who was crying.

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Ryan Hancock

She demanded that the woman hand over her daughter, pulling her hair again after she refused.

Moss took the child, and as the three defendants went to leave police arrived and they were arrested.

The two men who were assaulted suffered bruising and swelling.

The judge accepted there may have been a ‘sense of grievance’ but said it was ‘no way’ of responding.

He said that Whittaker and Hancock and both acted in ‘misguided loyalty’.

Moss, of Aaran Street, Burnley, received a two year community order after pleading guilty to two counts of common assault.

She was also ordered to complete 40 rehabilitation activity requirement days, and observe a curfew for three months.

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Whittaker, also of Aaran Street, Burnley, pleaded guilty to two counts of causing actual bodily harm, and was sentenced to six months in prison, suspended for 18 months.

He must complete 150 hours of unpaid work, and 20 rehabilitation activity requirement days.

Hancock, of Prestwich Street, Burnley, pleaded guilty to causing actual bodily harm and common assault, and received a two year community order.

He must also complete 150 hours of unpaid work, and 20 rehabilitation activity requirement days.

The trio were remanded in custody for about two hours, before the judge passed sentence.

“I hope that impressed itself upon all of you, if you are ever considering behaving in this way again, you know what is awaiting,” Judge Conrad said.

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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