Doorman cleared of unlawfully killing man he punched in face – as reported yesterday

As we reported yesterday, A nightclub doorman was found not guilty by a jury after a man died from a single punch to the face.

Sean Orrell, 32, said he was acting in self defence when he floored Joshua Hughes, 22, outside the Mary Street entrance of Glow in Lancaster. Mr Hughes was ejected from the club after a woman claimed he slapped her on the bottom.

Members of the club’s security team carried Mr Hughes out of the club head first down three steps leading to the street. Orrell, of Wigan Road, Leigh, told the jury at Preston Crown Court that Mr Hughes had refused to leave his bottle of beer when he was asked to, LancsLive reports.

Outside the club, Mr Hughes got up and was joined by three friends in the street. A confrontation took place in which Mr Hughes and his friends offered out the doormen, telling Orrell to “step forward” from the protective line they had formed at the side of the road.

Orrell said the aggression coming from the group of four was not stopping despite attempts by security to de-escalate the situation. CCTV shown at Preston Crown Court showed Mr Hughes punch Orrell to the face. The bouncer said the blow caused him to lose one of his front teeth.

At that point he threw a punch at Mr Hughes, who banged his head on the pavement as he fell to the ground. Mr Hughes suffered a fractured skull and catastrophic brain injuries. He was transferred to Royal Preston Hospital where he died on June 16, 2022.

During the three day trial, the jury heard from Mr Hughes’ friends who said they were upset at seeing their friend manhandled from the club. They said they did not know why Mr Hughes was removed.

Orrell told the court Mr Hughes had spat at him before he punched him. He said the group of men were “a serious threat” to himself, his colleagues and people in the nightclub. He said he returned the punch “with the force he met me with”.

As the club’s on site medic administered first aid to Mr Hughes, Orrell returned inside. He was arrested on suspicion of GBH with intent and later charged with manslaughter following Mr Hughes’ death.

However after viewing the CCTV and hearing from Mr Hughes’ friends and Orrell, the jury took just over two hour to unanimously clear Orrell of the charge.

Source – Liverpool Echo