A Derbyshire footballer who assaulted a referee is told he must pay compensation

Pictured is Belper Town FC's ground, on Bridge Street, Belper.
Pictured is Belper Town FC's ground, on Bridge Street, Belper.

A footballer from Chesterfield who admitted assaulting a referee during a cup final match at Belper Town FC has been told he must pay compensation to the victim.

Tristan Brown, 27, of Springfield Road, Holmewood, Chesterfield, was accused of headbutting referee Gareth Carlisle during the match between Rangers FC and Buxton Stags at Belper Town FC’s ground, on Bridge Street, Belper.

Chesterfield magistrates' court.

Chesterfield magistrates' court.

Brown was originally sentenced at Chesterfield magistrates’ court to a 12 month community order with a rehabilitation requirement and 100 hours of unpaid work and he was ordered to pay an £85 victim surcharge and £85 costs, as well as £100 compensation.

But Brown applied to have the compensation lifted during a further hearing on Wednesday, November 13, after the referee had allegedly posted a message on a referee support group site stating he had not been injured.

Defence solicitor John Wilford, who applied to have the compensation withdrawn, said: “He posted on that group over what the penalty was. He stated, ‘Remember, I was not injured in the slightest so this is a tremendous result’.”

Mr Wilford added: “This suggests what he said in his witness statement at best was a mistake or potentially a lie and magistrates ordered compensation and we ask for the case to be re-opened and for the compensation to be reviewed.”

Mr Wilford also said that Mr Carlisle had originally stated the assault had caused pain and the case had attracted interest and publicity from Talk Sport.

The court previously heard Brown had admitted assaulting the referee on the basis there had been some head movement but it was not deliberate and there was no physical contact apart from possible pushing.

Brown pleaded guilty to committing assault at Belper Town FC in April 5 on the basis there was only a head movement with no contact but there was some pushing.

Prosecuting solicitor Lynn Bickley opposed the application to withdraw the compensation order because magistrates had sentenced Brown on what they had heard during the original hearings.

The court heard magistrates sentenced Brown on his version of events after the defendant had accepted contact between their heads and that there had been a push to the referee’s chest causing Mr Carlisle to stagger backwards.

But Mr Wilford argued it needed to be clarified whether magistrates had imposed compensation on the basis of any injuries or for distress.

However, magistrates refused the application to re-open the case on the grounds the compensation awarded was commensurate with the assault.