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Rugby player admits attacking man in Whitehaven wine bar

Carlisle Crown Court

A rugby player who attacked a man in the toilet of a Whitehaven wine bar has been told by a judge that he won’t be sent to prison for the violent crime.

Karl Olstrom, 29, appeared at Carlisle Crown Court today remotely from home over a video link while self-isolating, and admitted one offence.

He pleaded guilty to unlawfully and maliciously inflicting grievous bodily harm upon Anthony Dixon on December 7 2019.

This followed a night-time incident at Shakers bar, Duke Street, Whitehaven.

The court heard Mr Dixon was punched four times in total by Olstrom, and had suffered three eye socket fractures.

Although Mr Dixon had spoken, in February last year, of issues in respect of sinuses and headaches, there was no  evidence he required any surgical intervention.

Anthony Parkinson, defending Olstrom, said the defendant was currently unemployed but seeking work.

“He previously played rugby at a high level,” he told the court.

“He was a semi-professional player but due to the pandemic last year stopped playing and, therefore, stopped receiving any income.”

Mr Parkinson added: “He will, no doubt, go back into that once the current rules are relaxed.”

Olstrom’s plea came after the judge, Recorder Neville Biddle, indicated that the prison sentence would not exceed two years, and that he would be prepared to suspend it, and attach a compensation order

However, the judge stated that Olstrom, of Ullswater Avenue, Whitehaven, would have to attend court in person to be sentenced.

The case was adjourned and Olstrom is due to receive his punishment on 15th February.

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