A TERRIFIED man was hurled off a Wigan bridge into a river by two thugs who had badly beaten him up.
Details of Keith Jones’s horrific ordeal emerged when his attackers, who had been high on a cocktail of drink and drugs, appeared in court for sentence.
Martyn Trezise, who had kicked the 42-year-old victim in the face as he desperately tried to cling onto the parapet of the bridge near the DW Stadium, was jailed for eight years. Liverpool Crown Court heard that Mr Jones plummeted 17ft into the River Douglas in the darkness of a cold autumn night and was unable to escape from the water.
Police found Mr Jones, who had suffered two broken cheekbones and a fractured nose, standing in two feet of water but they were unable to reach him.
Firefighters had to be called to the scene in Scholes and after they lowered a ladder down the steep embankment the victim managed to climb to safety.
He was rushed by ambulance to hospital where he was treated for hypothermia as well for his fractures and he was detained for three days, said Harry Pepper, prosecuting.
Trezise, 22, whose father Stephen Bradley was tragically stabbed to death when he was a boy, admitted inflicting grievous bodily harm with intent.
Alongside him in the dock was Paul Lyszkiewicz, a 24-year-old father-of-two, admitted affray and was jailed for 10 months.
Judge John Roberts said that after being kicked and punched near a block of flats he was further assaulted by the bridge.
“You both lifted him up and bundled him over the top of the railings of the bridge head first.
He told Trezise that the victim had managed to grab hold of the outside of the parapet “but you finished things off in the sense you put one of your legs over the parapet and kicked the face of Keith Jones in such a way he let go. He must have been terrified.”
Mr Pepper had told the court that about 5am on October 15 last year, Mr Jones went for a night out and was merry after drinking about four pints. While walking home he saw the defendants apparently urinating and he shouted a comment as a joke.
They began to chase him and he ran and saw a friend by a block of flats and went to him but they caught up and Trezise assaulted his friend.
The court heard that Mr Jones, who was knocked out and lay motionless during the attack, only had a vague memory of events but the incident was caught on CCTV which was watched by the judge.
The footage showed Trezise attacking Mr Jones who was then picked up off the floor by Lyskiewicz. Trezise pushed the victim into bushes and the two men and Mr Jones were then seen walking towards the bridge.
When they arrive, Trezise, of Stanley Road, Platt Bridge, again attacks Mr Jones and then gestures to his friend, of Thirlmere Avenue, Ince, and they both lift him over the railings.
“Mr Jones grabbed hold of the railings but Trezise kicked him to the head and put his leg over so Mr Jones definitely goes into the water and Mr Jones fell into the river. The two men hung around the scene and the police arrive,” said Mr Pepper.
Trezise made no comment when interviewed and Lyszkiewicz said he had not touched the victim and had rung for an ambulance. He said he had drunk beer and Sambuco and taken cocaine and said Trezise had also taken alcohol and cocaine.
“Lyszkiewicz said they were walking home and Mr Jones followed and they put him over the railings as he would not go away,” said Mr Pepper.
Defence barrister Steven Swift, said that Trezise, who like his co-accused has previous convictions, had taken drink and drugs but was not putting that forward as an excuse.
He said that the killing of his father when he was about 12 had taken its toll on him and there were issues that have not been addressed. His memory of the attack on Mr Jones is vague but his is “genuinely remorseful.”
Nick Ross, defending, said that Lyszkiewixz was also remorseful. “He is ashamed at being involved in this horrific attack and told police he was disgusted with himself.”