Page last updated at 12:15 GMT, Wednesday, 20 January 2010

Amy Winehouse admits pantomime assault

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Amy Winehouse admitted common assault and disorder when she appeared at Milton Keynes Magistrates' Court

Singer Amy Winehouse has admitted assaulting a theatre manager during a Christmas pantomime.

Winehouse lashed out at Richard Pound, 27, after disrupting a performance of Cinderella at Milton Keynes Theatre in Buckinghamshire last month.

The 26-year-old singer pleaded guilty to common assault and disorder at Milton Keynes Magistrates' Court.

Winehouse, from Barnet, north London, was given a two year conditional discharge and must pay £85 in costs.

Winehouse, who was charged under her married name Amy Civil, must also pay £100 in compensation to Mr Pound, the theatre's front-of-house manager.

Winehouse sat quietly in the dock wearing a short dark skirt and white shirt, and sporting her signature beehive hairstyle.

Julian Vickery, prosecuting, told the court that Winehouse had been drinking before she arrived at the performance at about 1900 GMT.

She (Amy Winehouse) felt embarrassed and patronised and, with no premeditation, grabbed his hair and pulled
Julian Vickery, prosecutor

He said the singer had gone to support a close friend in the pantomime, which starred Mickey Rooney and Bobby Davro, and had been in a "positive mood".

On arrival she was greeted by Mr Pound before taking up her seat in the stalls, seven rows back from the stage.

But a short while into the performance Winehouse began to get involved in the show prompting one member of the audience to ask her to keep her voice down, the court was told.

Hair grabbed

He said during the break in the performance the star, who was accompanied by members of her security team, was asked to move from her seat to a box.

Winehouse agreed to move and settled down in a box for the second part of the show but after a short left the auditorium to go to the toilet.

"Mr Pound was nearby and offered to show her where it was located," Mr Vickery said.

En route to the ladies Winehouse, who later admitted consuming five vodka and cokes, passed the bar and asked Mr Pound if she could have a double vodka and coke.

"He responded along the lines of 'Don't you think you should have a glass of water?'

"Miss Civil said she felt embarrassed and patronised and, with no premeditation, grabbed his hair and pulled," said Mr Vickery.

'An over-reaction'

In mitigation, Paul Morris said Winehouse had made "huge changes" to her lifestyle.

The court heard that the singer had no previous convictions and two cautions.

District judge Peter Crabtree told her that "Mr Pound is a person whose job involves interaction with the public... (who) deserves the court's protection".

"It was a reaction, an over-reaction. Clearly there was no injury," he said.

Addressing Winehouse, who sat quietly in the dock, he referred to a medical report, saying: "You clearly have taken effort from this report to address your alcohol problems and any other problems you may have, so you get credit for that."

But he warned her: "If you commit another offence you'll be hit hard and you'll be hit twice."

A conditional discharge means if Winehouse commits further offences within the next two years she will also face re-sentencing for the offences.



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