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Soldier beat up Where's Wally character

PUBLISHED: 07:30 29 April 2010 | UPDATED: 10:05 02 July 2010

A soldier headbutted a man dressed as the Wally character who stars in Martin Handford's books.

A soldier headbutted a man dressed as the Wally character who stars in Martin Handford's books.

David Bale

A soldier who headbutted a nightclubber who was dressed up as the 'Where's Wally?' TV character was told by a city magistrate that being in the army was no excuse for his bad behaviour.

A soldier who headbutted a nightclubber who was dressed up as the 'Where's Wally?' TV character was told by a city magistrate that being in the army was no excuse for his bad behaviour.

James Wickett, 20, from Layer Close, Bowthorpe, assaulted Luke Miles at Mercy nightclub in Prince of Wales Road, Norwich, on March 27.

Norwich Magistrates' Court heard yesterday that Wickett carried out the unprovoked attack in the nightclub's smoking area at about 1.30am.

Wickett, who is a private with the Royal Anglian Regiment based at Pirbright, Surrey, was ordered to carry out 60 hours unpaid work, and he must pay £350 compensation to Mr Miles and £85 costs.

Chairman of the bench Bob Price told Wickett: “We do appreciate the work soldiers do, but it's no excuse for what you did, and you cannot behave that way when you come back to Norwich.”

Wickett, who was unrepresented in court, said he regretted his actions, and colleague, Sgt Barry Smith told the court: “He's relatively new to the army but he's a respectful young man. He knows he was at fault.”

Sgt Smith said Wickett could expect to be deployed to Afghanistan within the next 18 months.

Prosecutor, Judith Piggen said Wickett had already pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing to assault.

She said: “Luke Miles was out that night with friends all dressed up as 'Where's Wally? He had gone to the smoking area, where the defendant also was.

“The defendant swore at him, asking him where Wally was and then headbutted him.

“He had a 2cm cut to the bridge of his nose which needed steri-strips to stop the bleeding. The defendant was arrested and said in interview he had been drinking and could not remember much of what happened.”

Magistrates told Wickett he would have to carry out the unpaid work in his own time in Norwich on weekends.

Where's Wally? is a series of children's books created by British illustrator Martin Handford . Wally is dressed in a distinctive red-and-white striped shirt, bobble hat, and glasses gnise. The franchise also spawned other media including a TV series , a comic strip and a series of video games.

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