Man on rampage headbutted rail station worker and bit chunk out of police radio

A thug armed with a crate of beer headbutted a train station worker and bit a chunk out of police radio during an early morning drunken rampage.

Bernard Hartnett, 28, was getting more and more rowdy before he grappled with rail staff and nearly pushed a man on the tracks just before 9am on a Sunday morning.

He then wrestled with cops who arrived at the scene – even biting through one of the officer’s radio, leaving wires hanging out of his mouth.

Hartnett was spotted going into Portsmouth and Southsea station in Hampshire, seemingly unsteady on his feet and carrying a crate of Budweiser.

A member of staff told him he couldn’t get on a train in his drunken state, to which the 28-year-old replied, ‘it’s not f***ing fair’ and launched a tirade.

Hartnett became increasingly aggressive towards the staff member, before headbutting him on the nose.

He then grabbed hold of the victim and began pushing him towards the platform edge, causing the man’s knee to collapse as he fell to the floor.

As the victim lay on the platform Hartnett attempted to punch him before other members of rail staff rushed over to bring the attack under control.

Police arrived and arrested Hartnett, who began to struggle as they led him away.

As they dragged him off, he bit into one of the officer’s radios and would not let go until he bit through part of it – snapping part of the device and leaving internal wires hanging from his mouth.

The rail worker was rushed to hospital and needed surgery for a ruptured tendon in his knee and was left needing a leg brace for three months.

Hartnett, of Challis Court in Southampton, was due to be sentenced last month, but did not turn up and a warrant was issued for his arrest.

After police tracked him down, he was jailed for two years at Portsmouth Magistrates’ Court yesterday.

Hartnett pleaded guilty to grievous bodily harm without intent and criminal damage at an earlier hearing in February.

Detective Constable Phil James, investigating officer in the case for the British Transport Police (BTP), said today: ‘Put simply, Hartnett’s actions that morning were appalling.

‘No one should go to work and be subjected to violence or intimidation.

‘We will always support those working on the railway and ensure anyone who does them harm faces the consequences of their actions.

‘I hope the adequate prison sentence handed down to Hartnett brings the victim some small comfort.

‘We have zero tolerance for this offending, and we’ll always take action.’

Anyone who witnesses violence or harassment at rail staff or passengers on the network can text BTP on 61016, police added.

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