Tube man 'bit ear of commuter'

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The Independent Online
A London Underground worker was filmed while he ground his teeth into a commuter's ear after a row at a ticket barrier, a court was told yesterday.

Passengers rushed to Robert O'Brien's aid as Michael Topping sank his teeth into his lobe. They had to use force before unclamping the Tube employee's jaws from the side of his victim's head, it was claimed.

The men, along with Kehinde Odynaike, another London Underground worker, yesterday appeared at Southwark Crown Court.

Janet Boston, for the prosecution, said the incident occurred on a crowded Piccadilly Line platform just before midnight last December. She said trouble flared after Mr O'Brien, 25, began shouting at Mr Topping at the ticket barrier.

She said the pair exchanged blows before Mr O'Brien, who was also allegedly hit by Mr Odynaike, ended on the floor.

Miss Boston said that after passengers intervened Mr O'Brien walked off, only for Mr Topping to sink his teeth into his ear. She said part of the incident was caught by station security cameras. The trial was adjourned until today.

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