Jail for Reece Roberts’ attacker

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A man who carried out a street attack, that changed his victim’s life forever, has today been sentenced to 20 months in prison.

A court heard that Thomas Field, 27, threw a single punch outside Bar 19 in Blackpool and appeared to brag about it afterwards.

The man he struck, Reece Roberts, went on to collapse and suffered a catastrophic head injury.

Mr Roberts, of Lakeway, Layton, is still in Royal Preston Hospital where he cannot speak, has to be fed through his stomach and has brian damage.

Preston Crown Court was told today he will be on medication for the rest of his life.

His attacker, from Rushton Road, Levenshulme, Manchester, had pleaded guilty to a charge of inflicting grievous bodily harm over the events last September.

The prosecution said Mr Roberts, a Blackpool and the Fylde College student, had been having a cigarette outside the bar, minding his own business when Field walked up and punched him in the face.

A newspaper cutting about the incident was in his possession when he was arrested a few days later.

The victim later needed frontal bones removing from his skull to reduce pressure, but complications set in.

He suffered a fall in Blackpool Victoria hospital, but a doctor felt that the assault had caused a significant brain injury.

Defence barrister Bob Sastry said Field was devastated by his actions and had no intentions to cause the injuries which occurred.

However, the case was an example of how serious harm could easily be caused by a single blow.

The judge, Recorder Michael Blakey, said he was bound by guidelines in the sentence he passed.

He told Field he was very lucky not to have caused the other man’s death.