Burnley Tesco manager jailed for attack that left colleague scarred for life

JAILED: Alan Ball (31) was given 12 months in prison for a bottle attack. (s)
JAILED: Alan Ball (31) was given 12 months in prison for a bottle attack. (s)

A TESCO manager who hit his colleague over the head with a champagne bottle and boasted about it on Facebook, has been jailed for 12 months.

Ben Webster was left scarred for life after the unprovoked attack by 31-year-old produce manager Alan Ball.

The 20-year-old victim, a security guard at the Burnley Tesco store, is still suffering “nightmares and flashbacks” from the incident in the town centre Walkabout Bar last Hallowe’en.

Burnley Crown Court was told that after the incident Ball claimed to be traumatised by what had happened, but didn’t hide away and talked about it on the social networking site.

The defendant, of Huddersfield Road, Mossley, had earlier admitted wounding. He had no previous convictions.

Stephen Parker (prosecuting) told the court Mr Webster went out with his girlfriend, friends and work colleagues in Burnley. At midnight, they arrived at Walkabout and bottles of champagne, which one of their number had won, were being passed round the group.

As the group was leaving Walkabout, the defendant was on the dance floor with the victim’s partner. Mr Webster approached his girlfriend and Ball, holding a bottle by the neck, swung at the victim and hit him.

The victim, who had known the defendant for four years and worked with him for two, was taken to hospital and had eight stitches.

Richard Taylor (defending) said character references showed he was a hard-working, family man, who helped others. The offence was not premeditated and totally out of character.

The solicitor continued: “This was a single moment of madness, for which he is going to have to pay extremely heavily.”

Mr Taylor added Ball apologised and showed remorse.

Speaking after the hearing, Mr Webster branded Ball’s attack “cowardly” and said justice had been done.

There’s more on this report in Friday’s Express