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Man has half his skull removed as one-punch attacker is jailed

The victim of an unprovoked one-punch attack had to have half his skull removed and spent weeks in a coma following the assault.

Braden Stromberg was attacked by Kyle Stephenson in Houghton Road, Bolsover, on 2 May 2022.

The 27-year-old was knocked unconscious after being punched in the face and then hitting his head on the road.

Stephenson ran from the scene of the attack – leaving Braden lying on the ground while his distraught girlfriend rang for an ambulance.

After being rushed to hospital he was placed in a coma before doctors were forced to remove half of his skull due to the swelling of the brain caused during the attack.

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Braden was discharged from the hospital on 26 May 2022 after 23 days of treatment but the effects of the attack have impacted him physically, emotionally and financially.

In a victim impact statement, Braden explained how he has been left unable to hold a cup of tea, and had his dream of owning his own home dashed.

“I am still awaiting surgery to rebuild my skull and one false move or incident could prove potentially fatal.

“My financial situation is dire and the worst it has ever been. Not being able to support myself financially and having to rely on state benefit payments and handouts from family has certainly impacted my self-confidence and self-worth. It has also caused unnecessary stress to loom over the family.”

Stephenson, meanwhile, was quickly arrested for the attack and was charged with section 20 grievous bodily harm – he eventually pleaded guilty to the offence.

Appearing at Derby Crown Court on Monday 6 February 2023, the 32-year-old of Vernon Street, Ilkeston, was jailed for one year and 10-and-a-half months.

The injuries suffered by Mr Stromberg continue to have an impact on his life,

Mr Stromberg added: “I am worried about how my appearance will alter after I have had my surgery, and the impact this will have on my confidence and self-esteem. I hope that the person responsible for assaulting me appreciates the impact his actions have had, not only on me but also on my wider family.

“The consequences of his actions are far-reaching.”

Detective Investigator Sarah Price lead the investigation, she said: “This unprovoked attack has had a devastating impact on the life of Braden. It’s left him needing extensive hospital treatment over many months, the treatment he will continue to require moving forward.

“The actions of Stephenson just go to prove how damaging a single punch can be with the victim incredibly lucky to have survived the ordeal.

“What happened on that day in Bolsover has not only had a major impact on Braden’s life but also on those closest to him with his family suffering alongside him through the aftermath.

“Stephenson will now have time to think about the consequences of his actions behind bars and I would urge anyone who finds themselves in that situation to take a step back and think about what could happen not only to themselves but also to the other person involved in the incident.

“This is a sobering reminder of the devastating impact that a single punch can have.”

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