Dizzee Rascal known for Bonkers: Appeal against his conviction for assaulting his ex is delayed

Dizzee Rascal’s appeal for assaulting his ex-fiancee in June 2021 has been delayed by two months after a witness tested positive for Covid-19.

The musician, 37, whose real name is Dylan Mills, was convicted of attacking Cassandra Jones, 33, and his retrial at the Inner London Crown Court has been adjourned to December 9. 

The court heard in March he pressed his forehead against Ms Jones and pushed her to the ground during a ‘chaotic’ row at a residential property in Streatham, south London, on June 8 last year.  

He avoided a prison sentence for the offence and was given a 12-month restraining order – banning him from contacting his former partner – along with an electronic tag and a 24 week night time curfew, which is appealing. 

Mills also smashed a camera of PA Media photographer James Manning outside the court in March, shortly after his guilty verdict was handed down. 

Dizzee Rascal’s (pictured in June outside Croydon Magistrates’ Court in April) appeal for assaulting his ex-fiancee in June 2021 has been adjourned to December 9 after a witness tested positive for Covid-19

Rascal's ex Cassandra Jones, 33, (pictured) of Streatham, south west London, spoke out after her partner of nine years was convicted of attacking her in front of her two young children

Rascal’s ex Cassandra Jones, 33, (pictured) of Streatham, south west London, spoke out after her partner of nine years was convicted of attacking her in front of her two young children

Dylan Mills (Dizzee Rascal)

The rapper arriving at Wimbledon Magistrates' Court

Dizzee Rascal, who real name is Dylan Mills, is pictured as her arrives at Wimbledon Magistrates’ Court where he was found guilty of the assault of Cassandra Jones

Footage taken showed Rascal rip a camera from PA Media photographer James Manning (right) after he left Wimbledon Magistrates' Court and hurl it into the road, smashing the device to pieces

Footage taken showed Rascal rip a camera from PA Media photographer James Manning (right) after he left Wimbledon Magistrates’ Court and hurl it into the road, smashing the device to pieces

PA's Mr Manning (pictured) filed a report to the Met and intends to pursue a civil claim

PA’s Mr Manning (pictured) filed a report to the Met and intends to pursue a civil claim

The damage caused to a camera after Dizzee Rascal, real name Dylan Mills, took a camera from a photographer and threw it into the road after being found guilty of assaulting his ex-fiancee

The damage caused to a camera after Dizzee Rascal, real name Dylan Mills, took a camera from a photographer and threw it into the road after being found guilty of assaulting his ex-fiancee

The former partner of Rascal told in March how ‘wealth and status’ should not be allowed to silence women who are victims of domestic abuse.

Ms Jones spoke out after her partner of nine years was convicted of attacking her in front of her two young children.

She told how she wanted to move on with her life for the sake of her children but insisted no woman should suffer at the hands of abusive partners.   

Ms Jones of Streatham, south west London, said: ‘I just want to heal, move on with my life and focus on looking after my bubbas now.

‘The verdict today has brought me no joy, but it does help me to look back on what I experienced and have it recognised by the courts as assault.

‘Dylan and I were together for a long time, and I loved him very much

‘He is the father of our two children. Last year I finally left him for good, after experiencing what I now recognise to be prolonged domestic abuse.

‘I have been receiving support from specialist domestic abuse services since last year, and that has helped me process my experiences and move forward. 

‘I understand why so many women drop out of the criminal justice system; this has been really traumatic for me. But I am lucky enough to have had support from the police, my family and friends, and specialist organisations.

‘This verdict today shows that wealth and status cannot be used to silence women.

‘One in four women in England and Wales will experience domestic abuse at some point in their lifetime. I now ask for privacy to rebuild and reset.

‘I hope I can now move on with my life. If the things you have read have resonated with you, I’d urge you to seek support. It’s available.’  

Mills had denied assaulting his ex-fiancee Cassandra Jones during a ‘chaotic’ row at a residential property in Streatham, south London, on June 8 last year.

Jones, who shares two children with Mills, alleged the rapper had thrown her to the floor and pressed his head against hers amid the argument.

Mills, who was behind chart-topping singles Bonkers and Dance Wiv Me, split with Jones in February 2021 after nine years together and was said to be ‘frustrated’ over custody arrangements.

The pair became embroiled in an argument when he dropped off their daughter at the property following a day out in June.

As the rapper left the Wimbledon Magistrates' Court, he ripped a camera from a PA Media photographer and hurled it into the road, smashing the device to pieces

As the rapper left the Wimbledon Magistrates’ Court, he ripped a camera from a PA Media photographer and hurled it into the road, smashing the device to pieces

After Mills was arrested, he told police ‘she assaulted me’ and that she had left him with a scratch on his left arm.

But Mills, who had denied the charge, was today found guilty after a trial and will be sentenced at Croydon Magistrates’ Court on April 8.

As the rapper left the Wimbledon Magistrates’ Court, he ripped a camera from a PA Media photographer and hurled it into the road, smashing the device to pieces.  

The court heard that Mills and Ms Jones, who had been together for nine years before their split, argued when Mills dropped off their daughter on the day of the alleged assault. 

He had been late arriving at Ms Jones’ house after getting stuck in traffic and told the court Ms Jones was bombarding him with calls and texts while he was driving, asking whether they would be back by 5pm in time for a chicken dinner.

He sent her texts which said ‘shut up, don’t give me no lip’ and ‘shut your f****** mouth’ before the row, but denied he was annoyed at the time, the court heard.

The prosecution alleged that Mills ‘barged’ his way into the property, banged his head on a fridge three times while holding his son and began ‘screaming and shouting’ at Ms Jones and her mother Dawn Kirk.

The court heard how Ms Jones began filming him but he took her phone from her and then took Ms Kirk’s phone.

The court was told the shouting became so loud that it alerted two neighbours and police were called.

A judge was told how when officers arrived, Mills said ‘I’m the aggressor’, but later gave a prepared statement in a police interview, denying the allegations and claimed he had been assaulted by Ms Jones.

Delivering her verdict, District Judge Polly Gledhill said: ‘I am sure that on 8 June on returning home with the child late he lost his temper and there was an argument about child contact and finances.

‘He took her phone to prevent the police being called and assaulted her.

‘I’m satisfied this actually occurred and I’m satisfied this constituted an unlawful assault.’   

Mills and Ms Jones were said to have had an ‘on and off’ relationship after first meeting around 2011, and in 2018 they got engaged.

In her testimony in February, Ms Jones described her ex-fiancé as ‘a ticking time bomb’, explaining that she was calm when he arrived on the doorstep with their daughter as she knew he was in a bad mood and did not want to anger him.

She gave evidence from behind a screen at Wimbledon Magistrates’ Court in the previous appearance, sobbing throughout her testimony.

PC Stephanie Johnstone said she arrested the rapper for common assault after he told her: ‘I’m the aggressor.’ But he later denied the assault in interviews.

The court was shown the officer’s bodyworn footage of Ms Jones sitting on the floor tearfully recounting the alleged attack. 

Mills told the court Ms Jones and her mother were ‘waving their phones around’ when he arrived back at the property. 

He said: ‘I didn’t want them used as a weapon.

‘When the police arrived I said ‘I am the aggressor’ but I was making light of it and trying to diffuse the situation.

‘I was not the aggressor, I did not do anything to her physically.

‘I ended up with two small marks because she was waving her phone around.

‘Those marks came from her. She was erratic. She assaulted me by pushing me and scratching my left arm.

‘I did not assault her that day.’

He continued: ‘I was angry, I was angry at times yes. I was annoyed at her, she was shouting in my face and she was angry.

‘At the police station I waited so long, the scratches I had when I arrived had become bruises.’

A statement from champion boxer David Haye, who has known the artist for more than 10 years, was read as evidence of Mills’ good character.

The former world heavyweight champion said: ‘I would describe Dylan as a stand-up and down-to-earth kind of man.

‘Dylan is a very easy individual to get along with.

‘He remained humble, having built himself up from nothing. He would rarely be seen out at celebrity social functions for the simple reason that he prefers to stay at home and spend time with his family.’

Mr Haye described Mills as a ‘role-model father’.

Mr Mills had a string of hit songs in the late 2000s and amassed a reported net worth of £2.5 million

Mr Mills had a string of hit songs in the late 2000s and amassed a reported net worth of £2.5 million

He added: ‘It is Dylan’s relationship with his children that I admire the most – despite his fame he always made time for his children.

‘I have never seen Dylan lose his temper nor display any signs of anger.

‘He was always calm and collected, he would not let anything fluster him.’ 

The court also heard from Mills’ ex-girlfriend, Tanya Chehrehnegary, who said she was ‘shocked’ when she heard about the allegations.

‘There have been many situations where your average person would get quite defensive but he’s always dealt with things in a very calm and collected manner,’ she said.

‘Whenever we argued he would always remove himself from the situation and always end it on a funny note where I would end up laughing about something and that would be the end of it.’ 

Prosecutor Helena Duong said Mills was ‘unprepared to answer any of the questions.

‘Even though it’s quite apparent in my submission that he plainly was upset about the situation with his kids.

‘He didn’t want to have to accept that he lost his temper that day.

‘He was the aggressor in the situation and the one who was responsible for assaulting Ms Jones that day and certainly not the other way around.’

Sallie Bennett-Jenkins, QC, defending the rapper, said: ‘This defendant did not have to give evidence but he did so gladly.

‘But he did so in a way that gave a consistent and wholly credible account of what happened that day.

‘He is a man who is calm, courteous as a partner, attentive, patient and generous.

‘It is the defendant’s evidence and he accepts that he was shouting that day.

‘That, with respect, is not what he was charged with.’

Mills had a string of hit songs in the late 2000s and amassed a reported net worth of £2.5 million.

He was awarded an MBE for services to music in 2020.

He was sentenced in April where the 37-year-old musician, who arrived at Croydon Magistrates’ Court dressed in a green bomber jacket, black jeans, trainers and a red hat, clashed with a TV journalist after being asked if he had any ‘regrets’ about his actions in June last year.

The rapper snapped back at the journalist, asking: ‘What do you mean?’ He then told the reporter: ‘You don’t know what you are talking about,’ before walking into the court.’

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