THREE men have been sentenced for their roles in violence which flared inside a north Cumbria pub.
It began as one customer, 29-year-old Ross Neville, reacted angrily to a derogatory FaceTime comment made about his girlfriend, who was also present in Longtown’s Graham Arms just after 11pm on January 18. Neville grabbed a phone from one man, ranting into the handset and throwing to the ground before stamping and striking it with a fire poker.
As violence erupted, Neville hit the man with a broken piece of pub furniture before fleeing the area with two other customers – Darren Mulholland, 20, and 22-year-old and Reece McGurty in pursuit. Moments earlier those two had been asleep in the pub following a day’s drinking.
CCTV captured Mulholland and McGurty then attacking Neville behind the bar – McGurty using a optic bottle. A bar worker had been pushed out of the way and forced to seek refuge in a reception area, while £1,600 worth of pub damage was caused.
All three men admitted affray and were punished at Carlisle Crown Court, where lawyers spoke of the trio’s shame and embarrassment for “unacceptable” respective roles.
Neville, of Broadmeadows, Canonbie, was jailed for 12 months; McGurty, of Lochinvar Close, Longtown, was jailed for nine months; and Mulholland, of Netherby Street, Longtown, had a seven-month prison sentence suspended for 18 months. He must complete a rehabilitation requirement and 180 hours’ unpaid work.
Referring to an “incident of significant violence”, Judge Barker told Neville: “There is no doubt that it is your actions that led to this incident occurring. Had you not behaved in such a dramatic way then this event would simply not have occurred.”