A Millwall football thug who smashed a glass bottle over the head of a Peterborough fan in a brawl outside a pub has been given a suspended jail sentence.
Jack Read (25) of Gomm Road, Southwark, London, was also banned from football matches for three years after admitting his part in the attack outside the Cherry Tree pub in Oundle Road, Peterborough on October 3 last year.
Read, a dad of two, pleaded guilty to one count of affray at Peterborough Crown Court today (Thursday). He was sentenced to 38 weeks in prison, suspended for two years, and was ordered to carry out 220 hours of unpaid work by Judge Sean Enright.
The court was told Read was in the pub when opposing groups of Millwall and Peterborough United fans squared off across the road. When Posh fan Shaun McNulty ran across the road to confront the Millwall supporters, a number of fans of the London club - including Read - came out of the pub.
CCTV footage of the incident was also shown to the court.
Charles Myatt, prosecuting, told the court: “CCTV shows Read hit McNulty over the head with a bottle, before kicking him.
“He then threw another bottle across the road.”
A witness statement from a Peterborough United supporter, who was with his seven year old son going to the match.. saod je saw a fight, involving about 20 males.
Read initially made no comment to police when he was interviewed, and pleaded not guilty - but changed his plea today.
Natasha Lloyd-Owen, defending, told the court Read had no previous convictions, and the behaviour was completely out of character.
She said: “He is someone who is easily led, which resulted in this terrible, impulsive behaviour.
“He was not the instigator in this incident.”
Judge Enright said: “I’ve seen the violence you willingly engaged in. You struck a man with a bottle, and kicked at him.”
However, he said he was able to suspend the custodial sentence because of his previous good character, guilty plea and the low risk of re-offending.
The court was told two men - Peterborough fan McNulty (21) of Pheasant Way, Yaxley, and Millwall fan Gaston Van Houwelingen (43) of Chestnut Avenue, Newham, London, had already been sentenced for their part in the incident after also pleading guilty to affray.
Van Houwelingen was given an eight month jail sentence and a six year football banning order, while McNulty was given a six month sentence, suspended for two years with 100 hours of unpaid work. He was also given a three year banning order.
A number of others also face one count of affray, and have pleaded not guilty to the charge. They will stand trial in September.