Saturday, 20 October, 2018

Ben Stokes trial: England cricketer told 'shut up or I'll bottle you'

PA    
   BEN STOKES CCTV of the England cricketer was shown to the court PA BEN STOKES CCTV of the England cricketer was shown to the court
Frederick Owens | 10 August, 2018, 12:26

As per the previously released CCTV footages, the all-rounder punched Ali and Hale and knocked them down.

The fast bowler, who is on trial for affray, alongside Ryan Hale, 27, and Ryan Ali, 28, is also accused of flicking a cigarette at gay clubbers William O'Connor and Kai Barry in a fit of rage, after they allegedly poked fun at his gold-encrusted trainers. Stokes said "matters had become too serious to ignore and that I had to intervene".

Witness Mark Spure, an off-duty police community support officer (PCSO), said that after he left Mbargo nightclub he spotted "three to five" people involved in a "scuffle" on a nearby street.

"I did not known Ryan Hale or Ryan Ali, and I was forced to make a decision as to how far they would be prepared to go and what they might do if they got the upper hand. As I was on my own, when I separated two of them more people carried on behind me", the statement continued. I felt I was going to be attacked.

In his first statement to police, Stokes described how he and England teammate Alex Hales were heading to a casino when they saw "two guys who were obviously gay" being spoken to by "two much larger men".

Mr Spure described seeing Stokes punch Ali, who was trying to get away, with a "clenched fist" in the road.

"As I approached the group I could see the male wearing the green T-shirt, Mr Stokes, squaring up to the other males", she told jurors.

When she told him to leave Mr. Stokes, who had been placed in a police van, the court heard that Mr.

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"I made a decision to intervene and asked Ryan Ali and Ryan Hale to stop abusing Kai and William".

Stokes told officers: "The force I used in defending us was reasonable and entirely justified when the circumstances are viewed objectively".

The prosecution has read medical evidence of injuries sustained by Ali and Hale.

Bristol Crown Court heard he was "squaring up" to other men before he was cuffed.

Hale cycled to hospital, where he was found to have bruising and a 4cm laceration consistent with blunt trauma.

Mr Hales was never arrested in relation to the incident.

Stokes is facing a charge of affray over a violent incident, which took place in the early hours of September 25 outside a club in Bristol.

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