Malt House bouncer pleads guilty to biting drunk patron
A former Malt House security guard has pleaded guilty to biting a patron's ear after leaving the venue to track down the man and instigate a brutal fight.
Christopher Robert Dagan was working at the Warwick pub on January 26 last year when he got into a verbal altercation with a man who was drinking with mates.
Sergeant Ken Wiggan told the Warwick Magistrates Court comments were made between the men about "sorting it out" after close.
Sgt Wiggan said the intoxicated patron left on foot and had made it near the Palace Hotel when he was approached by the then-20-year-old Dagan and another bouncer.
Dagan and his victim started "punching on" in a garden bed before wrestling around on the ground, the court was told.
"The complainant managed to wrap his arms around (Dagan) and the complainant rolled on top of (Dagan) and got a few punches on him," Sgt Wiggan said.
"The complainant then felt blood dripping down the side of his neck and the other other bouncer pushed the complainant off Dagan, and the (victim) called out, 'You ear-biting prick'."
The victim walked to the ambulance station to be treated for his wound, which required stitches.
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Defence lawyer John Davis told the court his client admitted biting the other man but only did so when the other man got on top of him and was "slamming" his head into the concrete.
Mr Davis said his client suffered a concussion in the fight, but conceded he should not have sought out the other man.
"He accepts he should not have been there and shouldn't have engaged in that conduct and it was his responsibility," he said.
"He has dealt with hundreds of intoxicated people and it was just this one occasion that he snapped and made a decision he severely regrets."
Acting magistrate Rob Turra said it was clear Dagan was remorseful and his decision to instigate the fight was "out of character".
But he reiterated the seriousness of the offending while in a security position.
"You had a role that evening to prevent and deter violence and maintain the safety of patrons," Mr Turra said.
"Your conduct instead was as the instigator of an assault and you went well out of your way to find that patron."
The court heard Dagan had his security licence suspended as a result of the incident and the recording of a conviction would force him to make a career change.
Dagan pleaded guilty to one count of assault occasioning bodily harm and was fined $1500. He was also ordered to pay $400 restitution to his victim. No conviction was recorded.