Jail for Colne party fracas pair with more than 100 previous offences between them

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TWO drunken louts who gatecrashed a Colne party and dished out violence to innocent people have both been jailed for 16 months.

Burnley Crown Court was told how Nikki East and Jobi Varey (both now 21) attacked Daniel Helm, booting him and allegedly stamping on his head. The victim was left with a tear to his eardrum after trouble at a flat in the early hours of February 11th.

The hearing was told Mr Helm was said to have been kicked “viciously” by both defendants after they were asked to leave the gathering and forced their way back in. Before they set on Mr Helm, a woman had been punched and knocked to the floor by one of them, and was said to have been kicked by both. A male party-goer had a glass smashed over his head and Varey broke a bottle and held it against a man’s neck. Mr Helm went to intervene and was assaulted.

Both defendants have been breaking the law since they were children - East since he was 12 or 13 and his accomplice since he was 14, have been given anti-social behaviour orders in the past and have repeatedly flouted them.

East, of Windsor Street, and Varey, of Duke Street, both Colne, admitted affray and assault causing actual bodily harm.

Mr Stuart McCracken (prosecuting) said, after he was attacked, Mr Helm tried to put Varey in a headlock, but ended up on the floor, being kicked. East punched him in the face, knocked him to the floor and kicked him. Both defendants were said to have stamped on Mr Helm’s head.

East and Varey were arrested nearby and questioned. East made no comment and Varey accepted being present but denied assault. He claimed he smashed a bottle to ward people off.

Mr McCracken said East had 38 offences on his record, going back to 2003. Varey had 63 offences, over seven years.

For East, Mr Richard Taylor said: “He had had too much to drink and behaved in this unpleasant, he concedes, way. This will be his first adult sentence and the longest sentence he will have received.”

Miss Kathryn Johnson (defending Varey) said he was not the instigator of the trouble. She continued: “Having said that, he has to accept responsibility for joining in and, of course, it rapidly escalated.” Miss Johnson urged the judge to spare the defendant immediate custody and give him one last chance.

Sentencing the defendants, Judge Beverly Lunt told them: “You were both violently out of control on this evening fuelled, as you were both were, by alcohol.”

The judge said it was lucky for the pair Mr Helm’s injuries were not far more serious, She continued: “You have both got dreadful records and have both got dreadful histories of completely ignoring court orders.”