Popular children’s play area boss Jon Pullin said he is ‘hugely relieved’ after being acquitted of assaulting a man in Sheffield’s Endcliffe Park.
The ‘victim’, Asif Majid, was arrested in court this afternoon after he shouted ‘Poppycock!’ from the public gallery during defence counsel Andrew Smith’s closing speech.
When you retired to consider your verdict, I had him arrested. I have considerable powers to deal with peopleRecorder Paul Reid, Sheffield Crown Court
As a teary-eyed Mr Pullin walked free from the court, Majid was sent into the dock to be given a dressing down by Recorder Paul Reid.
Mr Pullin had been accused of holding Majid down in front of hundreds of parents and children on a sunny day in the park in August 2013 as another man, Jason Marsh, punched him. Majid said Mr Pullin had then run back and kicked him in the face.
In a separate incident in October 2014, Majid said Mr Pullin had pulled over to him in his van as he was stood at a bus stop on Abbeydale Road. He claimed Mr Pullin had got out of his van and shouted racist abuse at him.
During the three-day trial, the jury heard Majid had previously jumped out at Mr Pullin as he was driving, causing him to brake hard. His dog was injured as it was thrown against the windscreen and Mr Pullin spent £400 removing the van’s signage so Majid would be unable to identify him so easily.
It took the jury less than an hour to find Mr Pullin not guilty of assault occasioning ABH and affray.
After discharging Mr Pullin, Recorder Reid told the jury: “You weren’t in court on Wednesday when I had to tell Mr Majid to stop gesticulating in the public gallery. He was doing the same sort of thing today and uttered ‘poppycock’ towards the end of Mr Smith’s speech.
“When you retired to consider your verdict, I had him arrested. I have considerable powers to deal with people.”
When Mr Majid entered the dock, Recorder Reid said: “I appreciate you have been under a great deal of stress over all this, that’s quite apparent. It’s no excuse for behaving the way you did but it’s a reason. Because of that I’m not going to take this matter any further.”
Recorder Reid reminded Mr Majid there is a restraining order preventing him from making any direct or indirect contact with Endcliffe Park Cafe proprietor Ashley Charlesworth, and advised him to stay away from the area of the park where the cafe and Mr Pullin’s fairground are situated altogether.
After the hearing, Mr Pullin said he was ‘hugely relieved’ the ordeal was over. He will be going back to work at his play ground in Endcliffe Park in due course.