Son made mum lie on floor ‘like dog’ in attack so horrific she soiled herself

A son subjected his mum to a brutal attack with a piece of wood and made her lie on the floor "like a dog".

Ryan Harland was described as a "vicious horrible animal" by mum Angela Harland after he left her terrified and with broken bones.

The 29-year-old hit the woman hard with the wood, ignored her pleas for mercy and left her so petrified she soiled herself, a court heard.

Now Harland, who lived with his mum in Pegswood, near Morpeth, at the time, has been jailed for seven years for inflicting grievous bodily harm with intent, Chronicle Live reported .

Angela first called the police on October 12 last year to tell them her son was threatening her, but officers were too busy to attend.

The police arrived after a neighbour called, but Harland was left in Morpeth and told not to go home after people at two different addresses would not have him.

He ignored the warning and returned to the home, Newcastle Crown Court heard.

Kevin Wardlaw, prosecuting, said Angela, 58, who has mental health difficulties, woke up from a nightmare.


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The court heard that her on told her to "shut up", adding "if you don't shut the up I will do you".

Angela picked up a length of wood which had two nails in it in a bid to defend herself and rap his knuckles, the court heard.

Harland took hold of it and twisted it out of her grip.

Mr Wardlaw said: "He then pushed her to the floor, ordering her to lie there like a dog.

"He struck her repeatedly and when she pleaded with him to let her up he said 'I'm not, f **  lie there like a dog'.

"She said she feared he was killing her but he continued repeatedly striking her, despite her asking for mercy.

"The complainant said it was a lengthy, prolonged attack with the stick while she was lying on the floor. She said it seemed like 10 to 15 minutes but she was not sure."

The court heard Harland stopped briefly before pulling her to her feet and throwing her towards the fireplace and resuming hitting her with the wood.

Mr Wardlaw said: "She was struck repeatedly to the head, body, arms and hands and she soiled herself by both defecating and urinating."

At one point he paused and said "Oh God I don't know what I'm doing, I can't stop".

When she told him she had soiled herself, Harland replied: "What did I tell you, you dog, shut up" and started assaulting her again, hitting her to the back of the head.


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Mr Wardlaw said: "She said she needed her heart spray but he continued striking her to the body, head, arms and hands."

He demanded that his mother get up, which she couldn't do because she was in too much pain.

Harland threw her into a chair before announcing that he was going to bed, leaving his mother to sit there overnight.

The next morning, he told Ms Hardland to tell people she had sustained her injuries by falling down the stairs.

Medics later found she had a fractured left forearm, fractures to the fingers of both hands, swelling to the back of her head and extensive bruising to her upper body, arms back and legs.

The court heard that while her physical injuries have healed, the mental scars have not.

Referring to her feelings about her son, Mr Wardlaw said: "She says he can sometimes be a gentleman but that night was a vicious, horrible animal who hurt her badly."

Harland, formerly of West View, Pegswood, has 133 previous convictions – including for assaulting his mother by holding a knife to her throat when she would not make him a sandwich.

He pleaded guilty to GBH with intent and was jailed for seven years, with an extended licence period of a further three years.

He was also given an indefinite restraining order forbidding him from contacting his mum or going to Pegswood.

Judge Julie Clemitson told him: "This was an appalling attack on your own mother, a prolonged, degrading attack using a weapon.

"At no time did you tend to her injuries or help her access medical help or appear to show any scintilla of care."

Tony Cornberg, defending, said Harland had anxiety, depression, a problem with alcohol misuse and that it was a "pressure cooker situation" between him and his mum.

The lawyer noted her mental health difficulties and claimed there "something similar to provocation" had gone on.

Harland, appearing on a video-link from prison, read a letter he had written saying: "I'm fully aware of and take ownership of this awful incident and fully accept it was completely out of order.

"I'm in shock with myself for doing that to my own mum. I understand she is still hurting and the pain of knowing her own son could do that is devastating and traumatising for me as the culprit in this.

"I fully understand I deserve whatever sentence is passed and I crave and want whatever help…so I can prove to my man how sorry I am and make it up to her."

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