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Ex-Ballymena player Davidson assaulted sex attack suspect at house party

By Nevin Farrell

Published 17/06/2016

Former Ballymena striker Jamie Davidson
Former Ballymena striker Jamie Davidson

A former Irish League football star has been found guilty of attacking a man he allegedly caught sexually assaulting a woman who had been asleep on a sofa at a house party after she had been out drinking.

Jamie Davidson (22), of Gloucester Avenue, Larne, appeared at Ballymena Magistrates Court yesterday.

He initially pleaded guilty to a charge of assault occasioning actual bodily harm against the alleged sex attacker.

A prosecutor said a woman was out in Ballymena and had gone to a friend's house in March last year and it was alleged she was sexually assaulted by a man.

Davidson, a friend of the woman, came into the room and allegedly caught the other man in the act and took him outside and assaulted him, knocking him unconscious, according to the prosecutor.

Defence barrister Neil Moore said the injured man, who was unknown to most of the people at the party, is being prosecuted for sexual assault involving penetration.

Mr Moore said the woman had too much drink taken and had gone to sleep in a living room when she was allegedly attacked before Davidson came to her aid.

District Judge Des Perry said after reading papers in the case he was vacating the guilty plea to the assault occasioning actual bodily harm charge. He said there was no evidence the man was knocked unconscious or had suffered injuries which equated to an actual bodily harm charge and found Davidson not guilty on that count. However he found him guilty of a charge of common assault and imposed a six month conditional discharge on the footballer.

Davidson, a striker who previously lived in Ballymena and played for Ballymena United, was once viewed as a promising footballer and was targeted by top English Premiership sides Liverpool and Tottenham. However, his progress was halted by serious knee injuries and lately he had been playing for an amateur team called Ruby's Rovers from Larne in the Ballymena Saturday Morning League.

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