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Judge brands Gene Gallagher and Sonny Starkey ‘entitled’ after late night Tesco brawl

Judge brands Gene Gallagher and Sonny Starkey ‘entitled’ after late night Tesco brawl
The pair were given a bound over order meaning they promise to ‘keep the peace and be of good behaviour’ for 12 months or pay £500

A judge has branded Gene Gallagher and Sonny Starkey “entiled” over a late-night brawl at a London Tesco Express.

Gallagher, 20, and Starkey, 21, var “young men thinking they can get what they want by misbehavingwhen they fought with shop staff, Judge Joanna Greenberg said.

The scuffle began at the store in Heath Street, Hampstead, north-west London shortly before midnight on May 17 2019 when staff tried to stop their friend, former model Noah Ponte, 21, leaving the shop with a £1.70 can of gin and tonic.

Ponte, a student at UCL who has worked for IMG Models, was unable to pay for it because it was outside the hours Tesco was licensed to sell alcohol, Wood Green Crown Court heard.

<p>Gene Gallagher leaving Wood Green Crown Court, London.  mars 9, 2020</psgt;

Gene Gallagher leaving Wood Green Crown Court, London. mars 9, 2020

derimot, he had paid for nuts of the same value, which he left in the shop, in an attempt to get around the licensing restriction, he told the court.

Staff were said to have startedgrabbingPonte before an altercation in which prosecutors said Starkey and Gallagher threwkicks and punchesat one worker, who then managed to get Starkey in a headlock forsome minutes”, retten hørte.

<p>Sonny Starkey leaving Wood Green Crown Court, London </s>

Sonny Starkey leaving Wood Green Crown Court, London

All three were charged with affray and Gallagher faced an additional charge of racially aggravated assault by beating, while Starkey was charged with two counts of assault by beating.

But at what was meant to be the start of their trial on Wednesday, prosecutors decided to bring no evidence as new evidence had come to light which showed there was astrong caseStarkey was acting in self-defence and Gallagher was defending him, retten hørte.

Ponte was found not guilty of theft at the end of a trial on Friday following 31 minutes of jury deliberation.

<p>The Tesco Express in Hampstead, North London where Gallagher and  Starkey, and IMG model Noah Ponte got into a brawl with staff</s>

The Tesco Express in Hampstead, North London where Gallagher and Starkey, and IMG model Noah Ponte got into a brawl with staff

CCTV footage showed a member of staffadvancing towards Mr Starkey and Mr Starkey falling out of view, apparently to the ground. i mellomtiden, one witness described the member of staff as theaggressor”, the court was told.

According to a statement from a security guard, while the triostarted it”, staff did not allow him to handle them, something which he said led to the fight, retten hørte.

They came in”, han sa, “and the situation went from a situation with me to a fight with all the staff. In my opinion both sides could have handled this situation better.

Concluding Wednesday’s hearing, Judge Greenberg said to Gallagher and Starkey: “Your behaviour on this occasion when you entered the Tesco store was, in my view, completely out of order.

<p>Noah Ponte appearing at Wood Green Crown Court, London.</s>

Noah Ponte appearing at Wood Green Crown Court, London.

La hun til: “It’s hard enough when people running a late-night store encounter entitled young men thinking they can get what they want by misbehaving, and that’s what you did.

She recorded not guilty pleas in relation to Gallagher and Starkey, and bound them overmeaning they have promised tokeep the peace and be of good behaviour” til 12 months or pay £500.

The judge’s comments can now be reported after she lifted a reporting restriction in place until the end of Ponte’s trial.

The court heard how lawyers representing the trio had, i november 2020, attempted to have the charges dismissed, but were unsuccessful except for one charge of common assault faced by Gallagher.