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Leeds United thug Aaron Cawley banned from Elland Road for life

By Gloucestershire Echo  |  Posted: October 23, 2012

Aaron Cawley

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NOTORIOUS football thug Aaron Cawley was jailed for four months after admitting assaulting ex-England goalkeeper Chris Kirkland in a televised match.

A court heard the 21-year-old, from Hester's Way, was too drunk to remember his actions in the Sheffield Wednesday versus Leeds United clash on Friday night.

The unemployed yob, who is a lifelong Leeds fan, ran onto the pitch in the 77th minute and dealt Wednesday keeper Kirkland a two-handed blow to the face.

Cawley, who appeared in court with a Leeds United tattoo visible on his neck and the club crest inked on his right arm, was said to have downed several cans of Stella Artois lager, three-quarters of a litre of vodka and a up to 10 pints of cider prior to the incident.

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As well as the 16-week jail term, he was given a six-year football banning order meaning he cannot go within one mile of stadiums where Leeds are playing on match days.

Fans, police and club officials at Leeds United welcomed the punishment.

A club spokesman said: "We are pleased to see the matter dealt with by the courts so quickly.

"The club will also ban the individual for life from Elland Road when the banning order expires. Our one disappointment is that we feel the sentence could, and should, have been considerably longer."

Cawley was tracked down and arrested in Cheltenham in a lunchtime swoop on Sunday.

His family has been in hiding ever since after it emerged they may have been subjected to death threats from enraged fans.

When the Echo called at the family home, in Hester's Way, a man, believed to be a relative of the man, shouted from the window that an apology had been sent to Kirkland.

However, bosses at Sheffield Wednesday Football Club said no such message had been received yet.

Yesterday's court appearance at Sheffield Magistrates' Court marked a swift resolution to the incident. Paul Macaulay, prosecuting, said: "Mr Kirkland described it as being hit like a ton of bricks and he went straight to the floor."

The court heard Cawley emailed South Yorkshire Police and Sky News to admit responsibility for his actions, describing himself as "a disgrace".

The professed remorse contradicted posts published on his Facebook page.

On the social networking site, Cawley said: "Just to let you no (sic) got home safe and sound just had sex, and just been for s**t." Another post said his actions were "hardly crime of the century". The page was later taken down.

Cawley's solicitor Elizabeth Anderton said his client regretted his actions.

"He has expressed a great deal of remorse," she said. "He was disgusted with his behaviour, extremely ashamed."

The court heard he has a long history of football-related offending, including when he was 16, he was banned from every ground in the country after he was identified at the centre or 200-strong riots outside Leeds' Elland Road ground.

The judge was told he had broken banning orders four times, winding up in a Young Offenders' Institution last September following a breach.

District Judge Naomi Redhouse said: "You have brought shame onto the game of football by your actions." Cawley pleaded guilty to common assault and entering the field of play. He was jailed for 16 weeks and ordered to pay £85 costs. Later, he returned to court where he was given a six-year football banning order.

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  • Grahambarker  |  October 24 2012, 1:51PM

    hughanchor/ - I think you may be right re the scrubber element but not sure why people assume that criminals always become 'gay rapists' when sent to jail and then morph back ito Str8 / hetero / normal red blooded men when let out!

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  • NibNobs  |  October 23 2012, 1:18PM

    CaptCX, Let me know where I can get one of those RETURN train or coach tickets to Leeds for £20, more like £100! I wonder if the DWP will carry on paying his Job Seekers Allowance whilst in prison, or do you think they will kindly pay him out as a big 'lump sum' on release in time for Christmas? Or will 'the family' be 'so kind' as to be collecting his benefits on his behalf whilst inside? It's a shame that the DWP can't say to him, "You clearly have been spending your time going to football matches and not going to interviews, spending your benefits on booze/train tickets, therefore we will only pay out JSA again after you've applied for 20 jobs and attended at least 2 interviews, with proof of both please, then and ONLY then will the taxpayer shell out any more money on you" SOME HOPE!!!

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  • Don-Trigger  |  October 23 2012, 12:30PM

    @grahambarker, my guess would be that the "lucky" female is a cross between waynetta slob and Vicky Pollard. My other guess was that he was all alone with his favourite magazine and a jar of hand cream.

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  • IsitJimKerr  |  October 23 2012, 12:21PM

    Just wondering how many fans will change their allegiance, if he's in a jail in Sheffield, 'cos they HATE Leeds fansas much as Man Utd do!

  • hughanchor  |  October 23 2012, 12:02PM

    @Grahambarker, no doubt it was a real old scrubber who doesn't mind a roll in the hay with a "man" blessed with tiny wedding tackle (like Aaron Cawley). I assume she had her magnifying glass with her. Aaron is having experiences of a different nature now, in the showers at his new home. The other jailbirds may or may not be gentle with him.

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  • Grahambarker  |  October 23 2012, 11:18AM

    Who's the scum bag who had sex with him afterwards!

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  • Bellyflop  |  October 23 2012, 10:53AM

    The Cawley family have gone into hiding.Cowards, face up to you responsibility. You sired this low life. Let's hope you are hiding well out of Cheltenham and when that slim ball of a son is released from prison keep him out of Cheltenham. You can all draw your benifits from some other part of the country.

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  • IsitJimKerr  |  October 23 2012, 10:43AM

    Walker100.....................I see you are trying to play the 're-arrange the letters' game. However, firstly you have used two too many '*'s, and I think you made the fatal mistake of using a TiG banned word. I might be wrong, but I think maybe the letters you were looking for were t n u c, plus the 's' provided. Hope this helps. I agree with everything you say, but yesterday I commented on the use of cannabis, and was redded to death. Seems society loves it's drug of choice, but hates the dealers. Me, call me old fashioned, but I don't want someone off their face either flying my plane, or driving towards me on a narrow country road at night, and neither would any of the leftie drug swilling liberals if push came to shove, but in their rarified haze, they can't ever see that eventuality, in fact they can't see anything straight, that's the prob.

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  • Walker100  |  October 23 2012, 10:25AM

    So what on earth is wrong with the word "Scorte" TiG? (rearrange the R & O)

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  • Walker100  |  October 23 2012, 10:23AM

    This miscreant states that he has no recollection of the incident due to being drunk but seems able to recall EXACTLY how much alcohol he consumed. OK, put simply, he is lying. That means one of two things. He has either Perjured himself or has Perverted the Course of Justice with his testimony. For Perjury, 2 years. For Perverting the Course of Justice, maximum sentence is life imprisonment. When on earth are we going to stop mucking about and come down hard on these ******s who think (and usually do) they can get away with their behaviour. It's also about time that those miscreants who act with others but refuse to identify them should stay in prison until their memories return. Those that deal drugs while claiming benefits should also be prosecuted for benefit fraud.

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