Jack Tweed admits nightclub assault
Wednesday 03 August 2011
The widower of reality TV star Jade Goody today admitted assaulting a man outside a nightclub.
Jack Tweed, 24, pleaded guilty to common assault as his trial was due to begin at Redbridge Magistrates' Court this morning.
Tweed, who married Big Brother star Goody shortly before she lost a battle against cervical cancer in March 2009, was involved in a brawl outside Deuces Bar and Lounge in Chigwell, Essex, in which a 21-year-old builder was knocked unconscious.
The court heard that Tweed, of Buckhurst Hill, Essex, punched Tom Grantham in the head on January 3 this year.
Tweed appeared alongside his brother, Lewis Tweed, 21, of Roebuck Lane, Buckhurst Hill, who also admitted common assault.
Prosecutor Alex Matic said police were called by CCTV operators who saw the fight take place.
He said officers found Lewis Tweed at the scene but his brother had left. He attended a police station two days later.
"It appears to be drink fuelled," Mr Matic said.
Describing the CCTV footage, Mr Matic said Mr Grantham is seen walking backwards and exchanging words with the Tweeds.
He added: "Jack Tweed runs round the back of the claimant and swings a punch which connects with his head.
"The claimant staggers backwards for a short while then he falls to the ground."
Mr Matic said that Jack Tweed attempted to kick Mr Grantham, adding: "Lewis Tweed is seen to kick the victim in the groin whilst he is on the ground, also he punches the victim in the face."
Mr Matic said Mr Grantham appeared to be unconscious for a short time.
The CCTV showed Jack Tweed arriving at the bar at 2.37am - only a minute before the fight broke out.
When police arrived, they arrested Lewis Tweed, who said: "What can I say, I was in a fight," Mr Matic told the court.
He added: "Lewis Tweed was conveyed into custody and he was interviewed.
"He said that he was provoked by the claimant and said that the claimant was calling his brother names.
"He did punch him in the face but could not remember how hard. He did not believe it to be hard.
"He was drunk and he was sorry and he wished he had walked away."
Mr Matic said Jack Tweed gave a "no comment interview" when he attended a police station.
The pair appeared in court alongside The Only Way Is Essex personality Mark Wright, who is accused of using threatening behaviour towards Mr Grantham.
Tweed vowed after the death of Goody that he was going to grow up, stay out of trouble and "be the man that Jade wanted me to be".
But within weeks, tales of drunken nights with a series of young women emerged in the national press.
In September 2009 he was accused of raping a 19-year-old student but was cleared in April 2010.
He has been jailed twice in the past, once for drunkenly attacking a taxi driver after a night out in Epping, Essex, in May 2008, and once for an attack on a 16-year-old boy who he hit with a golf club in Ongar, Essex, in December 2006.
He was on curfew after his release from prison when he married Goody in February 2009. The terms of the curfew were relaxed to enable the couple to spend their wedding night together.
Tweed was born on June 9, 1987 in Waltham Forest and first came to national public attention when he and Goody appeared on 2007's Celebrity Big Brother.
Mitigating on behalf of Jack Tweed, Ronald Jaffa said he and Wright had invested a "substantial amount of money" in a refurbishment project at Deuces Bar.
Shortly before the bar was to reopen in October last year, it suffered a "fire bomb" attack and was "completely destroyed" inside, Mr Jaffa said.
It later reopened and on December 31 last year, four days before the incident, the bar suffered another arson attack.
Mr Jaffa said that on the night in question, Jack Tweed arrived at the bar, where revellers can enter free of charge but have to pay up to £1,000 for a table, after it had closed to see a friend who lived nearby.
He saw an argument taking place outside.
Mr Jaffa said: "He heard Tom, or someone with him, say they are going to petrol-bomb the bar.
"He took it seriously because of what had happened.
"This person was making threats, saying he was going to beat Jack up.
"As you well know, Jack is known in the Press, and people do, from time to time, say things (to him) that are not complimentary and often it is water off a duck's back.
"But this time, Tom raised his arms to Mark Wright so what Jack did was to hit him and then he tried to kick him."
He added: "Considering it in the cold light of day, he does not think he should have done it."
Mitigating on behalf of Lewis Tweed, Daniel Chadwick said his client acted after "serious provocation".
He said: "This was a sorry end to what would have been a very pleasant evening."
Mr Chadwick said Lewis Tweed, who has ambitions to become a professional golfer, had been out with friends at another bar, Mojo's, before going to Deuces.
He said Lewis and his friends got a cab between the venues and Mr Grantham tried to get into the vehicle.
"Several people did not want him, but Lewis Tweed invited him in," said Mr Chadwick.
"The claimant Tom Graham threatened several times to beat up Jack. These threats were made in the presence of, and directly to, Lewis Tweed.
"Lewis Tweed genuinely though his brother was going to be the subject of an attack.
"It was for this reason that the argument outside Deuces bar occurred."
Mr Chadwick said Lewis Tweed had told Wright what Mr Grantham had said, adding: "The argument was about whether or not he should come in the bar or go home."
He said Wright had tried to walk away but Mr Grantham had threatened to smash the windows of the bar.
Lewis Tweed was "itching" for the row to be over and only got involved after threats were made about the bar, given its recent history, he said.
Lewis Tweed admitted kicking Mr Grantham once in the leg and once in the jaw.
Mr Chadwick added: "It is a rather feeble kick, it is a rather girly kick and it is a feeble punch."
Magistrates told the brothers they would be sentenced on August 16 after pre-sentence reports were conducted.
They were both released on unconditional bail.
Wright's trial will begin this afternoon.
Mr Matic said that Wright was standing on the door of Deuces Bar to prevent uninvited people gaining entry to the premises.
Wright had been told that Mr Grantham had been "bad-mouthing" his friend Jack Tweed and denied him access to the bar, said Mr Matic.
As Mr Grantham walked away, Wright heard him say that he would come back and throw a brick through the window, the court heard.
"We can see from the CCTV that Mark Wright was making a beeline for Tom Grantham," said Mr Matic.
"We will see from CCTV that he swings four punches at him.
"You will see on CCTV having realised the error of his ways he then tries to assist when it is clear that the claimant is in a bad way physically."
When Wright took the stand, he said he put all of his savings into the bar and admitted that he was "reduced to tears" after the arson attacks.
He told police he "saw red" after Mr Grantham made threats about the bar. Wright said: "The bar has been tarnished three times now, I just wanted to know why he said it.
"He said something really aggressive. He said: 'I will knock you spark out'."
"I felt he was going to attack me. His hands were up and coming towards me. I wanted to protect myself."
During police interview Wright told officers he could not remember whether punches were thrown or what was going through his mind but could remember a "tussle". Wright told officers that this sort of behaviour was "not in his nature".
The Sun reported this morning that Wright was threatening to quit the ITV2 reality show over financial matters.
Wright's case continues tomorrow.
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