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Fashion-conscious teen avoids 'stupid' accessory

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A teenager charged with GBH who failed to comply with the conditions of her bail has escaped being tagged after successfully convincing magistrates that the ankle-borne electronic device would look "stupid" with her preferred choice of attire.

Skirt-wearing 18-year-old Natasha Hughes, accused of grevious bodily harm against another woman, found herself before Worcester magistrates after failing to answer the door of her house to police officers on at 2.30am on 1 November - as required by the curfew conditions of her bail.

The Crown Prosecution Service demanded she be tagged as a result, but Hughes lawyer argued it would be visible, look strange and "affect her dress sense". Magistrates agreed, and Hughes walked tagless from the court.

She still faces another appearance before the beak, and a maximum five years' jail if convicted on the GBH rap. ®

Update

The Department for Constitutional Affairs has issued the following statement on behalf of South Worcestershire Magistrates' Bench:

Despite what has been widely reported, Worcester magistrates' decision not to tag Natasha Hughes on 8 November was certainly not based on any element of fashion. At the bail hearing at Worcester magistrates court, magistrates took into account what was said on Ms Hughes' behalf, any previous history of failing to answer bail, whether she had she re-offended while on bail, and whether she was a risk to the public. The bench did not consider tagging was appropriate in this case, hence no discussion arose regarding the actual wearing of a tag.

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