Ex-Luton and Chelsea star guilty of assault and faces jail

Kerry Dixon
Kerry Dixon

Former Luton Town, Chelsea and England centre forward Kerry Dixon could be jailed after being found guilty of assaulting a man in a Dunstable pub.

Dixon, 53, of Jardine Way, Dunstable, punched a drinker off a bar stool in a late night attack in the Nags Head in High Street North.

Then, as the man lay on the ground, he delivered further punches and two kicks.

The ex-footballer was told by a judge that he now faces a custodial sentence.

Judge Barbara Mensah, sitting at Luton Crown Court today, told Dixon she was adjourning sentence for one week until Friday, June 19, for a pre-sentence report.

She told him: “I have taken the view that this is a serious assault, for which I will be considering a custodial sentence. Come prepared for a custodial sentence.”

She granted the former Hatters player bail, but made it a condition that he not go into the Nags Head where he had attacked 38-year-old father of two Ben Scoble in the early hours of May 15 last year.

The assault was captured on the pub’s CCTV system and played to the jury during the five-day trial.

Dixon pleaded not guilty to a charge of assaulting Mr Scoble occasioning him actual bodily harm.

During the trial, Dixon had claimed to the jury he was being hassled by Mr Scoble, who went and sat on his stool by the bar where he had been sitting with his girlfriend through the evening.

The CCTV footage that was played showed Dixon approaching the victim and taking his pint glass from the bar and placing it on a nearby table. Moments later he delivered a flurry of punches, knocking the builder off the stool and down onto the floor of the pub, where he continued the attack.

In the witness box, Dixon had claimed he feared he was about to be attacked by Mr Scoble and struck out in a pre-emptive strike, which he said was in self defence.

He said that although he had removed the pint glass from the bar, the victim was still holding a near-empty pint glass in his left hand on the bar.

The ex-footballer told the jury that he still bore the scar of a glass attack that happened in another pub in Dunstable ten years before.

He claimed that had been running through his mind when he struck out.

Dixon told the jury that when he asked the other man to get off his stool, he was told “F--- off fatso!”

Earlier in the evening, he said the victim had been disrespectful to him in the pub’s lavatory, when Scoble had asked him “Are you the drug dealer? Well are you? Have you got any?”

Giving evidence, Mr Scoble told the court he had not spoken to Dixon in the pub’s lavatory and he denied he had been abusive to him at the bar.

During the trial, Dixon told the jury that at the height of his career in the mid 1980’s he had earnt £400 a week.

Following the jury’s verdict of guilty, the court was told Dixon had a previous conviction for driving with excess alcohol in 2000 and had been cautioned for common assault in June 2002.

Before adjourning the sentencing, Judge Mensah said that she wanted to learn more about Dixon’s personal circumstances to help her arrive at the correct sentence.

During the next week, he will be interviewed by staff from the Probation Service, who will compile a report for the judge.