A MAN was assaulted after he objected to racist language being used by a teenager at a Blackburn Rovers match.

Blackburn magistrates heard Kieron Lewis made comments about players, the club and the town. Lewis, 18, of Bolton Road, Blackburn, pleaded guilty to assaulting Benjamin Wilkinson and racially aggravated threatening behaviour. He was made subject to a community order for 12 months with 100 hours unpaid work, fined £50 and ordered to pay £100 compensation to Mr Wilkinson. He was made subject to a football banning order for three years.

Matthew Siddall, prosecuting, said Mr Wilkinson was at the Blackburn versus Oldham match on August 13 with family and friends.

He knew the defendant from work and was aware he was sitting nearby.

“Lewis was shouting out racist comments and when a substitution was made he started to shout about his incompetence,” said Mr Siddall.

“Mr Wilkinson challenged him and said he was being inappropriate and the defendant responded by challenging him to a fight. The defendant then started punching him to the face and back before being ejected from the stadium.”

Lewis told a probation officer preparing a pre-sentence report that other than being drunk he was unable to explain his behaviour.

He said he was not someone who held racist views and since the incident he had seen Mr Wilkinson, apologised and bought him a beer.
A Rovers spokesman said: "Blackburn Rovers fully support the action of the Lancashire Police in dealing with this case. The club has a zero tolerance policy in relation to offences involving any form of discriminatory abuse or behaviour."

PC Dan Fish said: "Lewis' behaviour was both shocking and abhorrent.
"He was challenged by another fan about his actions and then started to attack him.

"Thankfully he was reported to police and made a full admission.

"We welcome the court result and hope it serves as a warning to others."