A riot broke out at a Wetherspoon pub and spilled out into the street in a melee which saw one of the instigators left with a fractured skull and a bleed on the brain.
Kane Parfitt, 24, and Jordan Cromie, 25, started the fracas at the John Fielding pub in Cwmbran at around 1am on August 22 last year. It began after an employee at the Caradoc Road pub asked a group of 10 men to observe social distancing measures but was ignored.
Shortly later Parfitt began pushing another man who pushed him back and Cromie started throwing punches. When the rioters were ejected from the pub Parfitt was assaulted by Kurtis Decourte, 27, and was knocked unconscious and left with serious injuries.
A sentencing hearing at Cardiff Crown Court on Friday heard the fight was described as a « free-for-all » by prosecutor James Evans.
During the brawl Parfitt was seen stamping on someone while they were on the ground and three or four men, led by Cromie, were seen punching an individual on the floor.
Outside the pub victim William Carpenter attempted to remove someone from the threat of violence but Parfitt turned his attention to him and blows were exchanged.
Mr Evans said Mr Carpenter « initially got the better » of the defendant but Cromie knocked him to the ground and began punching and kicking him.
When the police arrived two men, including Parfitt, were lying unconscious on the floor. As well as having a fractured skull Parfitt had blood on his nose and mouth and a bruise to the head.
Both of the defendants were identified by police from CCTV footage and were subsequently arrested. They both gave no comment interviews but they later pleaded guilty to affray and assault occasioning actual bodily harm.
Cromie, of Gelli Rhwy Road, Garndiffaith, Pontypool, was said to have previous convictions for threats to kill, dangerous driving, and public order offences while Parfitt, of Elgam Avenue, Blaenavon, was of previous good character save two cautions.
Decourte, of Edlogan Way, Croesyceiliog, was sentenced to a community order and ordered to carry out unpaid work at a previous court hearing.
Representing Parfitt barrister Gareth Williams said his client had been the victim of a serious assault and spent a number of days in hospital but he accepted his part in the brawl and « did not want to diminish his own responsibility ».
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Claire Pickthall, for Cromie, said her client was « appalled and ashamed » of his actions as the father of a young daughter.
Sentencing, Judge Wayne Beard said: « Mr Parfitt, some would say you got your just desserts for beginning the fight on the day in question.
« Public order offences are offences against the public. They affect the lives of ordinary people – in this case in a public house while attempting to have an evening of enjoyment. »
Parfitt was sentenced to a 12-month community order and a rehabilitation activity requirement and Cromie was sentenced to an 18-month community order, a rehabilitation activity requirement, and 180 hours unpaid work.
Both were also ordered to pay £250 in court costs.