Plymouth city centre attackers were like 'pack of dogs'
A JUDGE has told five men who attacked a stranger on the ground that they behaved "like a pack of dogs".
Recorder Ben Compton watched CCTV footage of the men punching and kicking the man in a late-night fight in the city centre.
The judge, sitting at Plymouth Crown Court, told the men : "You behaved like a pack of wild dogs around that man. It was disgraceful and it was cowardly and all of you should be really ashamed."
A sixth man who was also involved in the melee was jailed for six months for a later attack when he kicked someone in the head.
Martin Gale, Benjamin Harkin, Christopher Palmer, all aged 20; Marc Robertson, aged 41, and 34-year-old Mark Stacey, all admitted assaulting Connor Blackler causing actual bodily harm on October 1, 2010.
James Harris, aged 28, admitted affray during that incident and assaulting Antony Copley causing actual bodily harm on January 12, 2011.
Emma Birt, for the Crown Prosecution Service, said the defendants, Mr Blackler and his friends spilled out into Royal Parade from the Brass Monkey at about 11.30pm.
She added Mr Blackler punched a man who fell to the ground. He was prosecuted, but denied assault and the charge was dropped.
The court then watched CCTV which showed Gale, Harkin, Palmer, Robertson and Stacey confront Mr Blackler in a running fracas up and down the street.
Two other men, both unidentified, joined the assault, with one taking a flying kick at Mr Blackler.
Miss Birt said he ended up unconscious on the ground, with a bruised and bloodied face.
Recorder Compton told the men they played different roles but he regarded the attack as a joint enterprise.
Gale, of Dunnet Road, Southway, Harkin, of Goswela Close, Plymstock and Palmer, of Duke Crescent, Exmouth, were each ordered to do 100 hours unpaid work.
Robertson, of Bampfylde Way, Southway, and Stacey, of North Weald Gardens, Ernesettle, were both given 12-month jail sentences suspended for one year and each must also do 100 hours unpaid work.
Recorder Compton told Harris: "This was a shocking offence, attacks such as this with vicious kicks to the head, can result in manslaughter or even murder."
Harris, of Stour Close, Efford, was jailed for six months for the separate assault, with three months concurrent for the affray.