Page last updated at 17:07 GMT, Friday, 19 March 2010

'Carnage' pub crawl organiser hit man, 61

Two girls during a Carnage UK event
Carnage UK events have raised concern over excessive drinking

An organiser of a series of student pub crawls has been found guilty of assaulting a 61-year-old man who complained about noise at one event.

Ryan Hilton, 23, of Filey, North Yorkshire, punched Mark Roberts, knocking him unconscious at a Carnage UK event in Bangor, Gwynedd.

Carnage runs student events and has been criticised for encouraging excessive student drinking.

Hilton, who was convicted in court in Llandudno, will be sentenced in April.

Mr Roberts, a commercial diver who lives in Bangor close to a number of student venues, told the court he had been seeking reassurance that he would get a good night's sleep.

He said he had approached Hilton shortly before 11pm to ask what arrangements were being made to bring the event to a peaceful end.

He swung round so fast and, with his right hand, he caught me on the chin
Mark Roberts

But he had replied with bad language, Mr Roberts said.

As Hilton turned away from him, he had put his hand onto his shoulder and the defendant turned around and punched him on the chin, Mr Roberts told the court.

He said he had suffered cuts to his chin and was knocked unconscious when the back of his head struck the ground.

He told District Judge Miriam Shelby: "I needed to get to bed. I needed a good night's sleep, hopefully unbroken by the night's event.

"I went out not to object to the event but to enquire what plans they had to bring it to a peaceful end."

Mr Roberts added: "I honestly expected a reasonable response to my question.

'Recover attention'

"My only intention was to recover his attention. He swung round so fast and, with his right hand, he caught me on the chin."

Hilton had told Judge Shelby that that he was acting in self defence. He will be sentenced on 29 April.

He said he had turned round and pushed the resident in the chest with the palm of his hand but the court found him guilty of the assault.

Judge Shelby was told about 1,000 students were taking part in the Bangor pub crawl, watched over by 25 volunteer stewards recruited from the local university population.

Following a Carnage night in the city the previous year, North Wales Police had concerns about the event taking place, the court was told.

Carnage UK organises student "pub crawls" at more than 30 cities and towns across the UK.

In a statement, Carnage UK said: "We are obviously disappointed to learn of the conviction today of Mr Hilton, a former subcontractor of Varsity Leisure Group.

"We understand that he intends to appeal at the earliest opportunity."

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