Man who tried to stop nightclub fight had part of his ear bitten off by stranger

Part of a man's ear was found on a nightclub floor after he was the victim of a bite attack by a stranger.

Ellis Brown had been trying to stop trouble which broke out at Tiger Tiger in Newcastle on October 2 last year when Lee Howey turned on him using his teeth.

Newcastle Crown Court heard the 21-year-old victim's severed flesh was found by staff, put on ice and transferred to hospital.

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Despite efforts by medics, the bitten-off ear portion could not be re-attached, and Mr Ellis will be left permanently disfigured.

Prosecutor Neil Pallister told Newcastle Crown Court Mr Ellis had been on a night out with workmates at the city bar when he realised one of his friends was involved in a fight, so stepped in to stop it.

"He stood between the two males," said Mr Pallister. "The next thing he recalls is being pushed to the floor.

"He curled up into a foetal position to try and protect himself, but then felt pain to his right ear. He tried not to make the situation worse, didn't try to pull away, he tried to protect his ear. Nevertheless, he felt his ear was being pulled and he was being held down."

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The court heard when Mr Ellis managed to get to his feet he realised his ear was bleeding heavily.

Mr Pallister added: "Part of his right ear had been bitten off. He noticed a male standing in front of him with blood on his chin.

"Staff found the top of his ear and placed it in a latex glove with some ice and he was taken to the Royal Victoria Infirmary. Unfortunately, hospital staff were unable to re-attach the ear."

Mr Ellis told police in a victim statement: "This was a violent and unprovoked assault on me. I will be disfigured for the rest of my life."

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Howey, 19, of Oaktree Avenue, Newcastle, admitted causing grievous bodily harm, and Judge Edward Bindloss jailed him for 20 months.

He told him: "You took part of his ear into your mouth and bit the top of it off. There was a lot of pain, a lot of blood. Doorstaff found the top of the ear and placed it on ice. The complainant was taken to hospital, but unfortunately there were unable to re-attach the piece of ear, try though they did."

Shaun Routledge, defending, said ice-rink worker Howey "deeply regrets" what he did and added: "It must have been over in a few seconds. It was an aberration, out of character."

He added that Howey's family are "flabbergasted" by his behaviour, and he is generally thought well of by those who know him.