A Great Britain ice hockey player was jailed for 12 months this week after seriously injuring a fellow reveller with a single punch on a night out.
Luton Crown Court heard that Harrison Goode, 23, knocked Jamie Crawford to the ground outside Elements night club in Bedford in the early hours of April 15 after they had been thrown out by bouncers.
Goode, a lifeguard at Flitwick Leisure Centre, of Trent Avenue, Flitwick, denied the charge but was found guilty in a two-day trial this week.
Mr Crawford told the Crown court he had absolutely no memory of the assault.
He said: “I remember being in a club with friends, but I can’t remember the club. I woke up in hospital with a black eye and four cracks to the skull.”
The jury heard there had been tension between the two men because one of Mr Crawford’s friends had been out with Goode’s girlfriend.
A member of Jamie Crawford’s group Haydn Edwins told the court they had gone to Bedford town centre with two others.
Mr Edwins said he had seen Goode chatting to Mr Crawford because they knew each other. He then saw Goode push Mr Crawford. Bouncers escorted them outside and they left in separate directions.
But he said he then saw Goode run up and punch his friend.
He said: “It was a jog up to him and he hit him in the left eye. He put all his body weight into the punch. Jamie fell backwards and hit his head on the concrete and was knocked out cold. He was bleeding from the head.”
Goode told police he had acted in self defence and claimed Mr Crawford had approached him aggressively.
Prosecutor Daniel Higgins said that the victim has been left profoundly deaf in his left ear as a result of the blow, he lost his sense of smell, suffers headaches and had no short-term memory for several months.
Phillipa Ellis, defending, said Goode had been selected for the Great Britain ice hockey team and hoped to be included in the squad going to Italy in December.
The judge was handed character references for Goode, who helps with roller hockey sessions.
Jailing him, Judge Richard Foster said: “You are very fortunate you are not standing before the court on an allegation of manslaughter.”