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Rugby player Warren Riddell-Broomfield given suspended sentence after glassing soldiers in Chill nightclub

A broken bottle. Library picture
A broken bottle. Library picture

A Margate rugby player who “bottled” two squaddies in a nightclub attack has escaped going to prison.

Warren Riddell-Broomfield, 21, - described by a judge as “a hard-working young man” – attacked the soldiers at the Chill Nightclub in Canterbury.

But victims Christian Richardson and Shaun Magee weren’t at Canterbury Crown Court to see the case...they are fighting in Afghanistan.

Riddell-Broomfield, of Windsor Avenue was given an 18 month jail sentence suspended for two years after admitting charges of unlawful wounding and assault.

Prosecutor Jim Harvey told how Mr Richardson and friend Mr Magee had gone out in the evening for a drink in Canterbury.

“The two victims are friends who are in the armed forces and are currently on a tour of duty in Afghanistan.

Canterbury Crown Court
Canterbury Crown Court

“There were at the Chill Nightclub together when Mr Richardson went to the toilet. As he walked out he was struck over the forehead by the defendant using a bottle.

“He immediately felt blood coming from his head and as he turned to back away he was then struck over the back of the head with an object. He momentarily lost consciousness.

“CCTV footage showed that after the first blow, as he was cowering and covering his head to protect himself, he was then struck over the back of the head, “ he added.

The prosecutor said Mr Magee saw his friend being attacked before the bouncers ordered “everyone out of the club” .

Mr Harvey added: “After going outside Mr Magee was confronted by the defendant and struck over the head with a bottle. He fell to the ground and has no recollection about what happened afterwards until the police arrived.”

He later told officers: “I am shocked that something like this has happened. It has made me think again about coming out alone. I don’t know what might have happened if my friends hadn’t been with me.”

Riddell-Broomfield claimed that shortly before the attacks one of his friends had been on the dancefloor when they were assaulted and “subjected to racial abuse”.

He claimed his friend received an eye injury and they had gone into the toilet area to examine the injury more closely.

Riddell-Broomfield claimed he then confronted a group – including the two victims – “and believed they were responsible for the assault”.

“I am shocked that something like this has happened. It has made me think again about coming out alone" - victim Shaun MaGee

A row broke out and during the melee he struck Mr Richardson twice with the bottle. Outside the club he claimed Mr Magee ran towards him and he lashed out fearing he was going to be attacked.

Kerry Waite, defending, said Riddell-Broomfield, who plays rugby for aMargate team, was in a steady relationship and had taken on the role of "a significant person” in the life of her two year old child.

“He is an intelligent young man, educated and obtaining GCSEs and ‘A’ levels and had been planning a career in the military. He now works for a local store and is hoping to go on a management course.

“He is not a man who normally goes out and drinks to excess. This was an isolated incident.”

Judge James O’Mahony ordered him to remain under partial house arrest for the next six months and told to stay at his home between 8.30 pm and 3.30 am. He was also ordered to do 150 hours of unpaid work as a punishment.

He told him: “You were drunk and you used a bottle. These are aggravating features and these assaultsd were committed in public where young people were present and would have found it shocking.

“Mercifully, and no thanks to you, the bottle didn’t break and the injuries weren’t more serious. You are a hard working young man and you are at a crossroads in your life..”

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