A MAN who punched a police officer in a large-scale disturbance outside a pub has been fined for his actions.

Dean West, 35, admitted assaulting an emergency worker after police attended reports of fighting and glass bottles being thrown outside The Friar, in St Christopher Road, Colchester.

West, of Magnolia Drive, Colchester, punched a police officer on the jaw in the fracas.

Colchester’s Community Policing Team launched an investigation after the incident, in August, and also arrested 23-year-old Kaine Hart.

Hart, of Church Road, Peldon, admitted wilfully obstructing a police constable and using threatening or abusive words in a public place.

A spokesman for the team said: “During the incident, Hart consistently used abusive language when there were members of the public nearby who were not involved in the disorder.

“Then, as officers tried to arrest his friend on suspicion of assaulting a police officer, Hart decided to physically intervene and try to free his friend.”

He added: “West blindsided an officer who was on his knees trying to arrest a man, sucker punched him on the jaw, and then ran away.

“The officer was taken to hospital for x-rays and treatment.

“West's cowardly actions were rewarded by the court with fines and costs of over £1,000.

“Two other men remain under investigation for their involvement in the disorder, one on suspicion of criminal damage and one on suspicion of assaulting an emergency worker.

“We will update the public as these investigations reach their conclusions.”

Hart was given a 12 month community order, ordered to complete 80 hours unpaid work and will have to pay £200 in costs.