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Deranged neighbour jailed for terrifying drug-fuelled attack in Exmouth

By Exeter Express and Echo  |  Posted: March 14, 2014

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A deranged neighbour has been jailed for a random attack which left his victim too frightened to answer his door.

Robert Standfield launched his motiveless late night assault after scratching at his neighbour’s door and lunging at him as soon as he opened it.

He sank his teeth into the terrified man’s face and bit through his lip and ripped off the top of one ear during a frenzied attack.

The victim fought for his life and both men rolled down the communal stairs in the block of flats where they lived in Exmouth before the struggle resumed on the bottom landing.

Standfield seized the victim by the throat and was on the verge of throttling him before his girlfriend rushed out of her flat to intervene and the police were called.

The unemployed shop worker has a history of mental problems and went berserk after mixing prescribed medication with illegal drugs and alcohol.

Minutes before the incident he had attacked a complete stranger who had parked on double yellow lines outside the flats to drop off two friends.

Standfield, 27, of St Andrews Road, Exmouth, admitted causing grievous bodily harm with intent and common assault and was jailed for six years by Judge Jeremy Griggs at Exeter Crown Court.

The judge imposed an extended four year licence period after ruling that Standfield posed a danger to the public.

He told him: ”You pose a danger to the general public because it is not possible to identify what triggers your erratic and dangerous behaviour when you choose to self medicate with legal drugs and other substances.”

Sean Brunton, prosecuting, said the incident on the night of June 11 last year started with an attack on an innocent motorist who pulled up outside the flats to escort two friends into their homes.

Standfield became angry, shouted at the driver, seized the wheel and threatened him as he tried to get away.

He then went into the flats where he was heard making wholly false allegations that his upstairs neighbour was a ‘puppy paedo’.

He scratched at the victim’s door and launched his attack when he opened it, biting him on the lip and ear, bundling him down the stairs, and throttling him.

Mr Brunton read a victim impact statement which revealed the neighbour thought he was going to be killed in the attack.

It said: ”I opened my door and was confronted by someone calling me a paedo who came in and started punching and biting me and put me in a head lock.

“I was kicked, bitten and felt I was fighting for my life. I was terrified and was trying to get him away from me. I was thrown against the wall so hard it left a hole in it and my back hit the wall as I tried to fend him off.

“I fell down the stairs and at the bottom he was kicking me in the head and punching me in the face and he tried to strangle me with both hands around my throat.

“I felt a lot a pressure and could not breathe and felt my eyesight going and it was going dark. I thought he was going to kill me if I did not get him off. He kept calling me a paedo.

“His girlfriend who he was living with intervened and I escaped out the front door. I now feel anxiety and fearful of opening my front door and want to move house.”

The victim needed stitches in his lip and ear and his face and body were covered in bruises and grazes. He needed hepatitis inoculations as a result of the bites.

Jeremy Harris, defending, said: ”My client now appreciates fully the effect that alcohol and substance abuse has on his behaviour and is very remorseful. He understands the victim’s suffering and it is something he feels terrible about.”

He said Standfield had been diagnosed as suffering from social anxiety disorder which results in extreme shyness and led to his irrational behaviour when under the influence of drink and drugs.

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