Man fought off gang with a fence post

A CHEF used a fence post to knock a man unconscious after jibes about his clothing and son, a court heard.

Aran Henderson, who works at the Fleece pub in Boxford, picked up a length of wood and used it to attack two men following a night out in Sudbury writes Neil Bracegirdle.

The 28-year-old, who lives in Hyde Road, Sudbury, appeared at Bury St Edmunds Magistrates’ Court on Friday charged with affray.

Magistrates heard that Henderson had come across four men in East Street at around 3.30am on June 24 after leaving Infinity nightclub.

“He struck two victims with a length of wood – a fence post – and knocked one unconscious,” said Rosalind Cappleman, prosecuting.

Miss Cappleman said that fortunately for Henderson – a former bar manager at The Swan in Lavenham – his victims, Danny Lynn and Ryan Pilgrim, did not receive lasting injuries.

In mitigation, Anne Gray said her client, who pleaded guilty, was full of remorse for the incident, which was fuelled by alcohol and an unsettled personal life.

“On the day, he had been thrown out of his home by his partner, who he has an eight-month-old baby with,” said Mrs Gray.

“This was due to problems with drinking and his reaction was to go out drinking.”

She said Henderson had been surrounded for four men, who had also been drinking and who started “having a go at him”.

“He said he didn’t want to get involved as he had a young son,” said Miss Cappleman. “Comments were then made about what he was wearing and his son, who they didn’t even know.

“He grabbed the fence post and accepts he was lucky there were no serious injuries.”

Mrs Gray said that Henderson did not drink at work but was guilty of binge drinking at the weekend and the incident had opened his eyes to his alcohol problems.

“He wants help and feels if he could go on a rehabilitation programme he could get back with his ex-partner,” she said.

Magistrates asked the probation service to complete a report on Henderson before he is sentenced on October 9. He was released on bail on the condition he does not get drunk in any public place.