Man attacked reveller

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A man who attacked a reveller in the mistaken belief he had punched him has been given eight months in a young offender’s institute, suspended for a year.

Preston Crown Court heard John Rourke repeatedly punched his victim, Philip Wish, on Church Street in Preston.

Judge Michael Leeming QC, who watched CCTV footage of the incident, described it as “brutish” behaviour.

Rourke, dressed in a grey suit, sat in the dock with his head bowed while his parents watched proceedings from the gallery.

The 20-year-old, who has no previous convictions, pleaded guilty to unlawful wounding.

Prosecuting, Hanifa Patel said Rourke, of Edinburgh Drive, Wigan, was drinking in Preston in the early hours of December 12 last year when he stepped in to try and break up a disturbance involving some of his friends, but was struck from behind by an unknown male. The court heard as he got up, he saw the victim to his front and assumed he had hit him before launching an attack.

Defending, Katy Appleton, said he was “very remorseful and deeply ashamed.”

He must pay £350 compensation, a £100 surcharge and £170 costs.