Man glasses Fleetwood barman in fruit machine fury

Crown Court
Crown Court

A pub goer who flew into a rage when losing on a pub slot machine glassed a bar worker who asked him to leave.

Christopher Lancaster, 28, of Homestead Drive, Fleetwood, became angry when he lost cash on a gaming machine in the Kings Arms in Fleetwood.

During the incident, at around 3pm on July 6 last year, other concerned customers told bar man Reece McLaren they had heard the dad-of-three threatening to damage the machine, and the worker decided to eject him.

He has been given an eight month prison sentence.

Prosecuting, Sarah Magill said: "Mr Lancaster arrived at the pub and was playing on a slot machine and drinking.

"The complainant stated that Chris Lancaster, who he knows, was on the machine for half an hour and was clearly not winning anything from it because he was shouting, swearing and punching it and threatened to throw it out of the pub.

"In effect, the complainant decided he needed to leave.

"This fell on deaf ears and therefore he left his position behind the bar and approached the defendant."

The court heard when the bar worker laid his hands on him, a struggle broke out and the defendant struck Mr McLaren while the glass was in his hand, causing an injury to his ear.

Mr McLaren's ear was partially severed and he went to Blackpool Victoria Hospital where the wound was stitched.

Lancaster, who admitted inflicting grievous bodily harm on the bar worker, appeared to wipe away tears as the proceedings took place at Preston Crown Court.

Defending, Julie Taylor said his mother was currently undergoing chemotherapy and said he was "bitterly sorry" for what had happened.

She added: " The first thing he said to the officer upon arrest was he had struck out not realising he had the glass in his hand, but he accepts entirely that he shouldn't have struck out."

The Honorary Recorder of Preston, Judge Mark Brown said: " It's clear you refused to leave the pub and as a result he came around the bar and approached you.

"At that stage you seem to have been squaring up to him and there quickly followed a scuffle between you."

"It's apparent the assault has had a psychological effect on his personality and has also left him with residual scarring."

" The incident occurred in a busy public bar and involved someone who was going about his work as a bar man. He was entitled to expect, on asking you to leave, that you would have done so."