Utter devastation as son-in-law trashes Falmouth woman's home

First published in News

A woman who had had her daughter and son-in-law living with her in Falmouth until difficulties arose and they left, returned home one day to find the place trashed, Truro magistrates heard.

Prosecutor Alison May, for the CPS, said the victim, Shirley Lower of Noweth Place, had been met with a scene of utter devastation.

Furniture had been smashed, the kitchen floor was a sea of glass, glass was everywhere in the living room with the television smashed, red wine stains on the carpet and up some of the walls and in her bedroom items of sentimental and historical value had been destroyed.

An abusive note had been left, also saying the power had been turned off.

“She found it very difficult to clean up and make the house safe,” added Ms May. Mrs Lower understood that the trouble had been caused by her son-in-law Jason Andrew Ross, aged 33, of Alderwood Parc, Penryn, who had blamed her for the couple having to move out.

“She is frightened of what may happen in the future and does not want him near her or her home,” said Ms May. The damage was more than £1,500 worth.

Ross pleaded guilty at Truro Magistrates’ Court to driving while disqualified, using a vehicle without insurance, criminal damage to items belonging to Shirley Lower worth £1,053 and belonging to Cornwall Housing Limited, who owned her house, worth £536.77.

Ms May said on January 7, when the offences took place, a witness had reported Ross at 9pm for driving at excessive speed and driving on the pavement before swerving in the road.

He had then called the police himself to report that he had been drink driving and was at his home in Penryn.

When he did a breath test at the police station he registered 71 micrograms, more than twice the limit. He had been disqualified from driving in 2003 until he passed a driving test, which he had not done.

Fred Howell, Ross’s solicitor, said his client had no recollection of the events at all but accepted the evidence before the court.

He had a history of not remembering and alcohol featured in it, together with an element of mental illness.

Community psychiatric nurse Bill Trotter told Deputy District Judge RP Morgan Jones that Ross had a long history of depressive and anxiety disorders back to his childhood and was taking anti-depressants.

He had been drinking very heavily for a long time, but since these offences had abstained completely.

The case was adjourned for a probation report and Ross was given interim driving disqualification.

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