Blyth mum is jailed after getting her neighbour locked up over false accusation

A single mum who got her neighbour locked up for 17 hours with a false accusation that he had damaged her home during an armed confrontation has been put behind bars.

By Court Reporter
Friday, 4th March 2022, 3:28 pm
Kelly Cordingly was jailed for four months when she appeared at Newcastle Crown Court
Kelly Cordingly was jailed for four months when she appeared at Newcastle Crown Court

Kelly Cordingly dialled 999 and told the police the man had broken a window handle and threatened her while carrying a knife when he turned up banging on her door last September.

As a result, the accused neighbour spent 17 hours in police custody before her story was exposed as a lie.

Prosecutor Tom Mitchell told Newcastle Crown Court the man had been to Cordingly's house on the night but CCTV showed he was carrying just a mobile phone and had said something through the window then walked away.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

Mr Mitchell said Cordingly's actions were out of "spite and desperation" after a history of problems between her and the neighbour, who was not directly next door.

Cordingly, 29, of Arthur Street, Blyth, admitted perverting the course of justice.

Miss Recorder Geraldine Kelly sentenced her to four months behind bars.

The judge told her: "No matter what the background there was to your offending on that day, police time and resources were diverted from where they could be needed, for genuine victims, genuine crimes.

"This was deliberate, you thought about the complaint you made and got him arrested.

"He was placed in police custody, wrongly, for 17 hours."

The judge said she accepted Cordingly was remorseful, was of previous, positive good character, has health problems and has two young children.

The neighbour she accused has got previous convictions.

Recorder Kelly added: "This offence strikes at the heart of the administration of justice.

"The message has to be sent out loud and clear that you do not get way with making false allegations.

"Those who make false allegations leading to the arrest of innocent people, regardless of whether they had committed offences previously, diverting valuable police resources, can expect to go to prison immediately, whatever the mitigation."

Tony Cornberg, defending, said there was a background of Cordingly being "pushed to the edge" and she has considerable remorse.

Mr Cornberg said the "dust has settled" between those involved since the offence.

Cordingly handed in character references and medical statements to the court.