Medway Messenger reporter wins right to name 17-year-old football fan who assaulted goalkeeper

A Medway Messenger reporter has successfully persuaded a youth court to lift the automatic ban on naming a 17-year-old football fan who attacked a goalkeeper.

Joshua Sanders admitted common assault after going on to the pitch during a Gillingham match against Wycombe in February.

The match was broadcast live on Sky Sports and showed the teenager running from the stand and leaping on Jordan Archer as he prepared to take a goal kick.

Appearing at Medway Magistrates Court Crime he was given automatic anonymity because of his age but reporter Lynn Cox successfully overturned it by pointing out the incident had already received worldwide publicity.

She also pointed out that Sanders had been named on the internet – even by himself.

Sanders’ solicitor objected but Judge Michael Kelly agreed that his name and picture could be published.

Messenger editor Bob Bounds said: "It was an excellent result by Lynn. Getting the automatic ban that covers youth court proceedings lifted is notoriously difficult because the courts are highly sensitive where young people are concerned.

“But in this case it was absolutely the right decision and allowed us to report this important case fully."

Afterwards Coz interviewed Sanders, quoting him as saying: “It was all right that I got punished, as it’s been a hard lesson to learn, I was stupid, I’m never going to do such a stupid thing again."

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