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Suspended sentence for football violence in pub

By Burton Mail  |  Posted: June 02, 2014

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A FOOTBALL hooligan caught brawling in a Burton pub and terrifying customers has escaped going to jail.

The violence erupted in the Lord Burton, in High Street, before Burton Albion’s game against Rotherham last year, Stafford Crown Court heard.

Pub patrons dived for cover behind the bar as glasses, drinks and chairs were hurled around by visiting fans.

The incident was captured on the pub’s CCTV and the footage played to the court showed Millers’ fan Jamie Bush in the thick of it.

He was stopped from throwing a punch at a customer by one of the bar staff and he later admitted throwing a chair at opposing fans.

Trevor Meegan, prosecuting, said when the gang of Rotherham fans entered the pub, the atmosphere was initially good, but it turned nasty when they began chanting at customers sitting in a raised area.

They surged towards the locals, shouting and waving their arms.

Glasses and chairs were thrown, damaging the light fittings. People sought refuge behind the bar and when police arrived they described the scene as ‘hostile’.

Bush wasn’t arrested until August, six months after the Albion match on February 9.

The court heard that he had been causing trouble on the train coming to Burton and last April was given a conditional discharge from magistrates for using threatening behaviour.

Bush, 24, from Rotherham, admitted a charge of affray at the Lord Burton.

He was given an eight-month prison sentence suspended for two years, ordered to do 250 hours unpaid community work and to pay £250 costs. He was also banned from Rotherham home and away games for the next three years.

Recorder Dennis Desmond told him: “You were swearing on the train and having upset people on the train you come to the Lord Burton, you had too much to drink and you get yourself involved in a brawl between supporters.

“It only lasted one or two minutes, but the fact is children were present, the staff were very scared.”

Stephen Grattage, defending, said Bush was a full-time carer for his disabled grandmother. “He acted as part of a group in a short, but nevertheless very scary, incident.

“He’s learned his lesson that day and he has changed his life as a result.”

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