Bouncer claimed to have used prison guard techniques

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A FORMER bouncer repeatedly bashed a man’s head into the ground outside an Eastbourne pub, a court heard on Friday (May 20).

Daryl Smith charged over to help his colleagues as a brawl broke out between door staff and four men near the Terminus pub in the town centre.

Smith, now stripped off his bouncer’s licence, grappled with Mark Whale and pinned him to the ground before smashing his head into the concrete in the early hours of December 1.

Close circuit television cameras caught 39-year-old Smith holding Mr Whale by the throat and kneeing him to the back of the head.

Heather Salvage, prosecuting, said, “Smith grabbed Mr Whale’s head and bashed it into the ground a number of times.

“He then held him around the throat and hit him to the head with his knees.”

Mr Whale had to be taken to hospital where he was treated for his injuries.

All four men involved in the fight were arrested by the police.

Madeleine Priestley, defending, said Smith, of Mount Idol View in Bexhill-on-Sea, had only reacted so aggressively because Mr Whale claimed that he had a knife.

Ms Priestley said, “Mr Smith accepts that by doing what he did in the early hours of December 1 he exceeded what was reasonable in self-defence.

“There was, as there always is in these matters, a build-up in tension.”

She added that Smith had tried to subdue Mr Whale so that he could not use the knife which he had claimed that he had.

Former prison guard Smith had claimed to police that he was using techniques which he had learned while serving as a prison officer to try and bring Mr Whale under control.

But a prison control expert rubbished this claim when he was shown CCTV footage of the incident.

Smith pleaded guilty to using words or behaviour which caused fear of unlawful violence.

Presiding magistrate Nicholas Leahterby told Smith, “You were in a position of trust, one that you exceeded in this instance.”

Smith was put on a 12-month community order, ordered to complete 100 hours of unpaid work and also fined £85.