A drunken street attacker was today jailed for a vicious attack on the Millennium Stadium’s international rugby announcer after a Wales game.
Swansea Valley-born announcer and actor Rhys ap William suffered life-threatening injuries during the attack on a street corner after celebrating the Six Nations win in Italy.
The Welsh TV actor – who was named in court under his real name William Rees-Jones – collided with Martin Frampton as he was walking along the street in Canton, Cardiff.
The court heard that this led to barging and a verbal exchange before Frampton, 24, “whacked” the actor.
Prosecutor Julian Greenwood told the court: “He went down like a ninepin and hit the back of his head on the kerb or the road surface..
“He fractured his skull and had bruising and bleeding to the brain and later suffered two seizures.
“The defendant said he had whacked the guy because he would not get out of his face.”
Mr ap William, originally from Cwmllynfell in the Swansea Valley, hit the ground so hard that the landlady of the nearby Admiral Napier pub described an “awful crack”.
CCTV footage played in court did not show the moment that Frampton hit the announcer but showed him falling heavily to the ground.
The announcer was treated for his severe injuries in Cardiff’s University Hospital’s High Dependency Unit before being transferred to a neurosurgical ward.
The court heard that Mr ap William – who has appeared in the Welsh soap Pobol-y-Cwm – made a slow and steady recovery before being discharged four days later.
Cardiff Crown Court heard that both men had been drinking heavily with Mr ap William watching the Wales game in a pub before moving on to the Cameo Club in Pontcanna.
Frampton’s lawyer Susan Ferrier told the court that both men had been drinking to excess and did not have a clear recollection of what had happened.
She said: “The defendant tried to help afterwards and has shown contrition and remorse- it was totally out of character.”
Judge Stephen Hopkins jailed Frampton, from Ely, Cardiff, for 12 months after he pleaded guilty to inflicting grievous bodily harm.
Judge Hopkins said that Mr Rees-Jones had watched the Wales game in the Duke of Clarence pub before going to the Cameo Club.
Frampton had been drinking at the Sports Bar in the centre of Cardiff.
The judge said: “The victim was hit so hard that he went down like a sack of potatoes and was rendered unconscious before he hit the ground and his injuries were life-threatening.
“This was night time violence by a drunken young man on another drunken young man without provocation.”