Man 'screamed abuse at Usain Bolt'

Halstead Gazette: A man is on trial accused of abusing Usain Bolt before the Olympic 100m final that he went on to win A man is on trial accused of abusing Usain Bolt before the Olympic 100m final that he went on to win

A man screamed abuse at Jamaican sprinter Usain Bolt before hurling a bottle at the start line of the men's Olympic 100m final, a court has heard.

Ashley Gill-Webb, 34, pushed his way to the front of an exclusive seating area without a ticket and shouted things like: "Usain you are bad, you are an a*******," the court was told.

He then threw the beer bottle as the race - which Bolt went on to win in 9.63 seconds - started at the Olympic Stadium on August 5, the court heard.

Gill-Webb, from South Milford, near Leeds, was confronted by Dutch judoka Edith Bosch, and then restrained by Locog volunteers and arrested by police, the court was told.

Gill-Webb denies using threatening words or behaviour with intent to cause harassment, alarm or distress, as well as an alternative charge of using threatening, abusive or insulting words or behaviour or disorderly behaviour within the hearing or sight of a person likely to be caused harassment, alarm or distress.

Opening the case at Stratford Magistrates' Court in east London, prosecutor Neil King told the court the Games had reached a highlight with the men's 100m final.

He said: "In the stadium, along with the many thousands who should have been there legitimately and were watching the race in hushed anticipation, was also Mr Gill-Webb who it is now accepted was unwell at the time. He had somehow, without a ticket ever being found on him, made his way into very exclusive seats indeed... Whilst there he hurled abuse towards the athletes in the final, particularly towards the eventual winner Usain Bolt."

He said Gill-Webb threw a bottle in the hushed stadium just as the race was about to get under way: "He threw a green Heineken bottle in a lobbing motion that was captured on CCTV. This bottle landed extremely close to the athletes and it's probably luck rather than Mr Gill-Webb's judgment that it did not do anything far more serious."

Gill-Webb, on whom police never found a ticket, was arrested and taken to a nearby police station, where his behaviour was described as "somewhat unusual", the court heard.

The defendant maintained he had nothing to do with throwing the bottle but said he had been "quite hyper" at the time. Mr King said although it was accepted Gill-Webb was unwell at the time, the Crown say he knew what he was doing, and being unwell did not mean he did not intend to cause harassment, alarm and distress.

click2find

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree