Stokes 'main aggressor' in Bristol episode, court told

PA    
   BEN STOKES CCTV of the England cricketer was shown to the court

PA BEN STOKES CCTV of the England cricketer was shown to the court

The prosecution's case is that at around 2.35am Stokes was captured on CCTV, brawling with co-defendants Mr Ali and Ryan Hale. "Although I can't remember anything specific now, I do recall that the language being used was homophobic in nature and was being directed at Kai and William by Ryan Hale and Ryan Ali".

"What Ryan Ali and Ryan Hale were saying was far from harmless banter, it was nasty homophobic abuse".

Hale, who it is alleged was punched by Stokes in footage captured on a mobile phone and played to the jury on Tuesday, cycled to hospital later on Monday and was found to have sustained a 1.5 inch superficial laceration to his forehead. I was concerned for myself and others. Giving evidence at Bristol Crown Court, doorman Andrew Cunningham said the millionaire sportsman humiliated the two gay customers by "mimicking their high-pitched voices and camp gestures" before fighting with Hale and Ali down the street.

"I decided at this point matters had become too serious to ignore and that I had to intervene to stop Ryan Ali", Stokes told police.

In the statement, which was read to a jury at Bristol Crown Court, Stokes told officers the men were speaking to the two others in a "harsh and abusive way".

In questioning, Spure told the court Stokes "seemed to be the main aggressor or was progressing forward trying to get to another individual".

Nicholas Corsellis, prosecuting, asked if he saw Mr Hale "put that implement down before he gets to the group?"

Pc Stacey Alway told the court how she was on duty with a colleague in a patrol vehicle when they saw a man, Ali, lying in the carriageway of Queen's Road with another person tending to him.

"I didn't know who these males were because I was unable to identify them".

"He (Stokes) mentioned my gold teeth and he said I looked like a c***".

"I was anxious it might be two on to one and I knew one had had a bottle", Stokes told police.

Stokes denies taunting them, telling police they "thanked me for preventing them from being beaten up". This was an extreme act of aggression in the circumstances and informed my assessment of the situation.

Stokes told police: "I can hear on the video Alex shouting".

"As I was on my own, when I separated two of them more people carried on behind me".

Stokes, who starred on Saturday as England beat India in the first Test at Edgbaston, is missing the second Test at Lord's due to the trial, which is expected to last five to seven days.

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