A MAN is set to appear in court to face an assault charge after he allegedly fired a crossbow at a victim in Colchester.

Delroy Mairah, 40, had been due to appear at Ipswich Crown Court over videolink from HMP Belmarsh yesterday, but the hearing was delayed after difficulties in securing the link.

His barrister Kevin Toomey told the court his client intends to admit a charge of assault occasioning actual bodily harm.

The charge followed reports a 25-year-old victim was struck with a crossbow bolt in East Street, Colchester, on September 11.

Following the incident Mairah, of East Street, was also charged with possession of an offensive weapon in a public place and possession of a blade.

Judge David Pugh said a pre-sentence report would not need to be prepared by the probation service ahead of any sentencing hearing.

He said: “All relevant matters can be put to the court on the next occasion.”

He indicated the charges would attract a sentence of immediate custody.

Mairah will remain in custody until he appears at the same court on November 4, where he is expected to enter pleas to the charges.

Armed police cordoned off East Street on September 12, the day after the incident, as they continued their search for a suspect.

Speaking to the Gazette after the incident, the victim said he was hit with a small bolt from a crossbow, but was able to remove it from his abdomen.

He said: “The next day when I had a chance to sit down and think about what happened to me, it did effect me.”

He added: “I was shot with a small bolt with a sharp point.

“The end of it penetrated my abdomen, it was kind of sitting on my skin slightly dragging down so I pulled it out and dropped it.”

A police spokesman said at the time: “The victim was taken to hospital for treatment for minor injuries.”