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21 March 2012, 09:25
Seven Middlesbrough supporters have been handed jail sentences and lengthy banning orders for affray and violent disorder.
The men were arrested for their part in violence before the Sheffield United v Middlesbrough football match on Saturday 9th April last year.
Rival fans threw glasses in the beer garden outside the Roebuck Tavern on Arundel Gate, Sheffield, at around 2.30pm.
When a member of the public confronted a number of Middlesbrough supporters about their actions, he was attacked and beaten unconscious nearby, causing extensive injuries.
South Yorkshire Police led an investigation with Cleveland Police and North Yorkshire Police and CCTV footage helped the forces achieve the outcome at court where seven Middlesbrough supporters were found guilty of their part in the disorder.
* Carl Davison, from Billingham, was sentenced to six months in a Young Offenders' Institution for affray and handed a six year football banning order.
* 22 year old Daryl Davison also from Billingham, was sentenced to two years in prison for violent disorder and given a nine year banning order.
* 19 year old Patrick Hebblethwaite, from Northallerton, was sentenced to nine months in a Young Offenders' Institution for affray and banned for nine years.
* 17 year old Jack Baker, from York was sentenced to twelve months in a Young Offenders' Institute for violent disorder and handed a nine year ban.
* 18 year old Harry Gregory from Northallerton, was sentenced to twelve months in a Young Offenders' Institute for violent disorder and handed a nine year ban.
* 18 year old Jack Thomas, 18 from Billingham was given two years in a Young Offenders' Institute and a nine year ban,
* Gerard Thomas, who is in his 40s, was handed a two year prison sentence and a nine-year ban.
Two Sheffield United fans were also found guilty of affray in connection with the initial incident in the beer garden. David Jones, 27, from Sheffield, was sentenced to 12 months imprisonment and given a six year banning order. The other man failed to appear at court and will be sentenced at a later date.
The football banning orders mean the offenders won't be able to attend any domestic or international football match in England or Wales for the set years and if the national team are playing outside of England or Wales then they are restricted in their travel arrangements outside the UK and generally have to surrender their passport.
DC Jamie Smith of Cleveland's Football Banning Unit said:
"The sentences handed out should act as a warning to anyone thinking of getting involved in football violence or disorder. Most of those sentenced had no previous convictions, yet still received custodial sentences.
The joint investigation between ourselves, South Yorkshire Police and North Yorkshire Police really has been successful as these banning orders are the toughest I?ve seen, demonstrating that violence at matches will not be tolerated, and should you get involved, you will be removed from the game.
Whilst the vast majority of football supporters continue to behave well, those that do misbehave at football matches will be dealt with robustly. Youngsters drawn into this violent culture should think carefully about how much they love the game. A moment of gratuitous violence can result in a lengthy ban, so think carefully about your behaviour at matches."