Pub boss arrested in racial attack probe says he acted in self defence when he pulled woman by the hair (From Echo)
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Pub boss arrested in racial attack probe says he acted in self defence when he pulled woman by the hair
10:10am Friday 1st November 2013 in News
THE manager of a Canvey pub has been arrested on suspicion of committing a racially-motivated attack on a woman.
Mark Lester, who manages the Admiral Jellicoe pub, in High Street, has been arrested and bailed in connection with an alleged assault said to have happened at the pub on October 5.
Witnesses reported to police an Asian woman was attacked after an argument broke out in the pub.
Officers were seen arriving at the pub several days later and arrested Mr Lester on suspicion of the assault.
A 52-year-old man, who had been drinking in the pub at the time of the arrest, said: “The police just came rushing in, went upstairs, read him his rights, arrested him for assault and took him away.
“I’ve been drinking at the Admiral Jellicoe for about 20 years and it’s the last thing you expect to see happen in your local pub.”
Mr Lester told the Echo: “It was in self defence and I have got CCTV to prove it. She was laying into my wife and the bar staff so I asked her to leave and she refused.
“So I pulled her by the hair and everyone jumped on me and locked me in the toilet.
“This is the fourth time a girl has tried to throw a glass at me and I’m slowly finding this to be part of the job as I’ve not been here long.
“I am not too worried if this goes to court because I know the truth, that I was protecting my wife, and the CCTV will prove it. I know the truth will come out.”
Mr Lester took over the running of the pub in 2011 with his wife Linda – who is the official licence holder – with the aim of making it a more “family-friendly” establishment.
An Essex Police spokeswoman said: “A man has been arrested on suspicion of racially aggravated actual bodily harm against an Asian woman after an incident at the Admiral Jellicoe pub on October 5. The 51-year-old man from Canvey has been bailed until December 16, pending further inquiries."