Fan arrested in spat over 12-year-old

AN Ipswich Town supporter, incensed over Norwich fans taking mobile phone pictures of a 12-year-old being arrested, must watch his own step today.Ashley Cobden swore at Canary supporters as the young boy was apprehended for threatening Norwich fans and allegedly kicking a police sergeant in the shin.

AN Ipswich Town supporter, incensed over Norwich fans taking mobile phone pictures of a 12-year-old being arrested, must watch his own step today.

Ashley Cobden swore at Canary supporters as the young boy was apprehended for threatening Norwich fans and allegedly kicking a police sergeant in the shin.

The loss of his temper led to the 19-year-old being given a conditional discharge when he was hauled before magistrates in Ipswich.

Lesla Small, prosecuting, said Cobden, of Braintree, reacted angrily when Norwich fans started using camera phones to capture the boy being detained by officers.


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Cobden pleaded guilty to the offence and the court was told that the incident happened as fans were beginning to leave the Portman Road stadium following Ipswich Town's 3-1 victory over their fierce Norfolk rivals on November 19.

Ms Small said: “Some Norwich fans were using mobile phones to video the boy being arrested which Mr Cobden didn't take kindly to. He shouted at the Norwich fans and swore at them several times.

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“Officers stepped in to prevent any escalation of the situation and he was arrested for a public order offence.”

The Evening Star has since learned the 12-year-old boy was arrested for threatening Norwich fans and swearing at a police officer.

It is also alleged the boy kicked a police sergeant in the shin while being detained and he has been bailed by police until December 18.

Roger Stewart, mitigating on behalf of Cobden, said his client had “lost his good name” as a result of the “unfortunate incident”.

Mr Stewart said: “The 12-year-old boy was arrested by police and taken out of the ground.

“My client went out of the ground and saw a number of Norwich supporters taking photos of the event and treating it as a good joke.

“He swore at them and a police officer nearby heard this being said and arrested him.

“Perhaps if the situation hadn't been highly charged football fans it would not have prompted police to react quite so strongly as they did on this occasion.”

Cobden was handed a six month conditional discharge by magistrates and was ordered to pay costs of £20.

What do you think of this court case? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

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