Thug Jed Dicks cleared of threatening cage fighter Ronnie Mann to stop evidence
JED Dicks did not threaten a professional cage fighter with more violence in a bid to prevent him from giving evidence against him, a jury ruled.
Dicks, 22, of Selkirk Gardens, Whaddon, Cheltenham, had previously pleaded guilty to unlawfully wounding Ronnie Mann.
But yesterday he was cleared of further allegations that he had threatened Mr Mann in a bid to make him drop the case.
After a trial at Gloucester Crown Court, a jury found him not guilty of a charge of threatening to take revenge against Mr Mann on November 16, 2011.
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The charge alleged that he threatened to commit or cause to be committed an assault on Mr Mann.
Prosecutor Paul Cook had told the jury at the start of the trial that Dicks had already pleaded guilty to wounding Mr Mann.
Then, on November 16, he alleged, Mr Mann was out buying a takeaway from Nando's and shopping at Tesco when he encountered Dicks.
He alleged that Dicks shouted: "Oi Ronnie, you need to change your statement. I'm not going to prison while my mum is dying."
Mr Cook also claimed that Dicks called Mr Mann a grass and suggested they have a fight to sort things out.
Mr Cook said the incident was reported to the police by Mr Mann and Dicks was arrested.
Dicks told officers he had not made any threats to Mr Mann but had been abusive to him because he was rude to his girlfriend.
In evidence, Mr Mann said: "He was pretty aggressive and he said 'let's have a straightener down there in the car park'."
Mr Mann explained that straightener was a local word meaning a fight.
He said he turned down the offer of a fight and walked away.
Cross-examined by John Hurlock, defending, Mr Mann admitted he had been disappointed that the original charge against Dicks had been downgraded from wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm to just unlawful wounding. But he denied that he had made up the allegation about the subsequent threat just to ensure Dicks got the sentence he felt he deserved.
Dicks' girlfriend Kirsty Milligan said she was with him at the time of the incident and he was not aggressive or threatening.
Dicks did not give evidence in his own defence.
He was bailed by Judge William Hart for a pre-sentence report before he is dealt with for the original wounding.
Sentence will be passed on February 28 and he was warned to expect a prison term.