A WAYWARD son who made his widowed mother’s life a misery has been hauled before the courts and given a suspended prison sentence.
Phillip Strong was violent towards mum Angela and would frequently be verbally abusive and smash or break property inside her Cleadon home.
A court heard Mrs Strong, whose husband killed himself in 2003, ended up fitting a steel door and frame so she could barricade herself inside her bedroom for protection and was so dispirited with life she actually felt disappointed when hospital tests confirmed she did not have cancer.
At Newcastle Crown Court, Strong, 19, admitted harassment of his suffering mum between September 2009 and May 2010, but the court heard her torment started many years ago.
Prosecutor John Brennan said: “Mrs Strong explains her life for the last seven to eight years. She has been assaulted, her property has been damaged and she has had money stolen.”
The court heard in just a few months early last year, which is covered by the charges he admitted, Strong had flown into a rage and grabbed his mum’s arms leaving her bruised, pushed her against a wall, smashed a spindle on her staircase and punched her bathroom door, was verbally aggressive and abusive to her, stole cash and even stole her medication.
During one furious incident Mrs Strong left her own home and wandered around the streets for two hours and during another she locked herself inside her bedroom with the reinforced door.
She had panic attacks and fainted because of what was happening.
Judge David Wood sentenced Strong, who has since been living in hostels in Sunderland and Hebburn, to 40 weeks imprisonment, suspended for two years, with supervision for 18 months and 150 hours’ unpaid work.
Strong has been banned from contacting his mother or visiting her home under the terms of a restraining order which lasts two years.
Judge Wood told him: “It may be you have had tragedy in your life, many people do sadly, but is is not an excuse to behave in this way or indeed to inflict such trouble on your mother.
“This is a prolonged and serious case, it is a quite unpleasant kind of harassment.”
Vic Laffey, defending, said Strong was hugely affected by the death of his father and had been using drink and drugs at the time he committed the offences against his mum.
Mr Laffey said Strong has had very little contact with his mum over the last 12 months and has not caused her any further trouble.