Ex-soldier dressed as Colonel Gaddafi faces jail after biting Machynlleth man's ear off

Published date: 16 February 2017 |
Published by: court reporter
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A FORMER soldier who went out dressed as Colonel Gaddafi is facing jail for biting off the ear of another pub-goer and spitting it onto the floor.

History student Geraint Jones, 25, was in a fancy dress black curly wig and bright orange tribal robes as the late Tripoli tyrant when he sank his teeth into his shocked victim in Aberystwyth.

Injured Gwynant Jones, from Machynlleth, gave police a vivid description of his Halloween attacker – and he was spotted on CCTV in his garb as the Libyan dictator.

Geraint Jones dressed as Colonel Gaddafi in Aberystwyth, left, and ear-bite victim Gwynant Jones, from Machynlleth 

A court heard Geraint Jones carried out the “cowardly and unprovoked” attack on the fancy dress night out with other friends on the “bad taste” pub crawl.

The Gaddafi-clad reveller was in the bar for just six minutes when he sank his teeth into Gwynant Jones’ left ear from behind.

Geraint Jones – who served on the frontline with the Army – told how he had been on a drinking session of more than six hours dressed as Gaddafi.

He said: “I accept biting Gwynant’s ear, that day I started to drink while watching the rugby during the afternoon.

“When I approached him, my intention was to bite his ear. It’s a horrible thing to do but it was not my intention to bite it off.

“My intention was to bite his ear in order to shock him.”

Mobile app designer Gwynant Jones, 25, was at the bar, at the Academy night spot in Aberystwyth when he was “savaged” by the fancy dress despot.

Prosecutor Ian Wright said: “He approached from behind and placed his hands on his shoulder before biting his left ear – ripping the lower section off.

“He was seen giving high fives in the street afterwards.”

Innocent victim Mr Jones said: “All I can remember is being at the bar and then suddenly feeling a lot of pain.

“I leaned forward and I think that’s when my ear must have ripped off and I saw lots of blood.”

He said he had not spoken nor argued with the fancy dress party before being attacked.

The court heard the severed ear lobe was later recovered from the floor by a barman but it was not possible to re-attach it.

Barman Sam Carter said: “His friend told me someone had his ear bitten off.

“I didn’t believe him at first. I asked him to take away his hand so that I could see the damage to his ear.

“There was blood running down his shirt, I would say at least a third of his ear was missing.”

Swansea Crown Court heard on Wednesday the fancy dress reveller had appeared to be in a scuffle with a different man at the bar earlier.

He was caught on CCTV cameras leaving but returned seconds later to bite shock Mr Jones – who had been watching the Rugby World Cup on TV before the 11.25pm attack.

Mr Jones had an operation at Morriston Hospital, Swansea, and needs further reconstructive surgery.

Attacker Jones admitted the bite – but insisted he did not mean for the victim’s ear to be torn off.

He claimed the ear lobe was accidentally torn off when another man tried to “pull” him away. Gwynant Jones’ friend William Skinner told how he stepped in to separate the two. 

But he said: “The damage had already been done by that time.”

Geraint Jones, who studies history and politics at Aberystwyth University, denied he wanted to sever the ear with his teeth.

James Hartson, defending, said: “He has described what he did as disgusting and reprehensible, he is not for a moment excusing his behaviour.”

The court heard Jones had been in the army but left the forces to take up history and politics studies.

Mr Hartson said: “He has worked in some of the most dangerous and hostile places in the world.”

Geraint Jones, of Queen’s Avenue, Aberystwyth, pleaded guilty to inflicting grievous bodily harm, but denied causing grievous bodily harm with intent and was cleared by a jury after just 42 minutes.

He was released on bail to be sentenced next month at Swansea Crown Court but was told to expect jail – and was warned it would have been 12 years if he had been found guilty of the more serious charge.

His Honour Judge Geraint Walters said: “The custody threshhold is well past. His behaviour that night was quite bizarre, it’s a very rare form of violence.

“This young man was completely innocent. He hadn’t put a foot out of line or said a word, but he lost a significant part of his ear, which may or may not be reconstructed. 

“He struck me as a very decent and understated individual.”

  • See full story in the County Times