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Suspended jail term for bottle attack
A COURT heard how tensions at a staff Christmas party spiralled out of control when a man from Knutsford hit his work colleague in the face with a glass bottle.
Staff from Cafe Salar in The Cross, Lymm, were drinking in Warrington town centre on February, 12 this year, when Gavin Fernandez-Macrae, 32, of Shaw Drive, Knutsford, was involved in an incident with the head chef.
Fernandez-Macrae was the assistant manager at the cafe, and Andrew McInnes, prosecuting, told Warrington Crown Court on Friday how his client had never ‘seen eye to eye’ with chef Mark Byrne.
Byrne was seen by witnesses to barge into Fernandez-Macrae in Cape Bar in Stockton Heath before the simmering bad blood erupted into violence later in the evening.
The group were in Show Bar in Friars Gate when Mr Byrne confronted the defendant on the dancefloor, with CCTV appearing to show a punch thrown.
Fernandez-Macrae reacted by ‘driving’ a glass bottle into his workmate’s face from close range, knocking out two of his teeth.
“(Mr Byrne) felt something hit him in the face and a massive thud,” said Mr McInnes.
“He touched his mouth and found he was bleeding heavily.”
The court heard the defendant left the bar telling people he had ‘bottled’ his victim after being punched.
Mr Byrne was taken to Warrington Hospital where his two incisor teeth were found to be missing.
He also had a wound to his lip that required internal and external stitching.
Defending, Adam Lodge said: “He says he was unnecessarily provoked. He believed his actions to be instantaneous.
“He pleaded guilty at the outset. There is clear and genuine remorse.”
The court heard that Fernandez-Macrae had written a letter of apology to the victim. He has no previous convictions.
Judge David Hale sentenced him to 12 months in prison, suspended for two years, ordered him to carry out 160 hours unpaid work and a placed him on a supervision order for 12 months.
He said: “Week in week out I get cases of people who cause injuries in nightclubs in Warrington by either their fists, feet, bottles or glasses.
“They are often people who don’t otherwise come to the court’s attention.
“Why people indulge in these acts of violence in nightclubs is a mystery to me – there is no excuse.”