Olympic 100m bottle throw: Man 'wanted Usain Bolt to lose'
- 3 January 2013
- From the section England
A man who threw a beer bottle on to the track at the start of the men's Olympic 100m final shouted that he wanted Usain Bolt to lose, a court has heard.
Ashley Gill-Webb, 34, of South Milford, North Yorkshire, was arrested at the Olympic Stadium on 5 August.
Dutch judo champion Edith Bosch, who confronted him, said she had heard him shout "Bolt, I want you to lose".
The defendant got into the stadium waving an old ticket, the jury heard. He denies two public order offences.
Mr Gill-Webb denies intending to cause the 100m finalists harassment, alarm or distress by using threatening, abusive or disorderly behaviour, thereby causing spectators present at the Olympic Park harassment, alarm or distress.
He also denies an alternative charge of using threatening, abusive or insulting words or behaviour or disorderly behaviour within the hearing or sight of a person likely to be caused harassment, alarm or distress.
'Alan Cumming signature'
His lawyers told Stratford Magistrates' Court he had been suffering from a "manic episode" and was not capable of forming an intention.
The prosecution accepts Mr Gill-Webb was unwell but dismissed the argument about intention.
Prosecutor Neil King said: "He had somehow, without a ticket ever being found on him, made his way into very exclusive seats indeed.
"He was mingling with members of the Dutch Olympic team. Indeed he would be within striking distance of a bronze medallist, Ms Edith Bosch.
"Whilst there, he hurled abuse towards the athletes in the final, particularly towards the eventual winner Usain Bolt."
After the plastic beer bottle was thrown, Ms Bosch said in a statement read in court that she had confronted him saying: "Dude, are you crazy?".
She said she had been "flabbergasted" because it was "disrespectful".
Bolt went on to win the race in 9.63 seconds.
'Waving old ticket'
Prosecutor Neil King said: "This bottle landed extremely close to the athletes.
"The shouting and jostling had already alarmed and disrupted those around him but throwing the bottle was a step even further."
Questioning defence psychiatrist Dr Robert Adams, Mr King said the defendant by-passed security by "waving an old ticket".
But Dr Adams said: "I don't believe that he expected to get into the Olympic Park. I think he thought he would try it.
"He got into the Olympic Park and was in the Olympic Park for quite a while, and then he thought 'I have got into the Olympic Park, maybe I can get into the stadium'."
But consultant forensic psychiatrist Dr Richard Latham, for the prosecution, said: "He was able to form an intention to do lots of other things, lots of other quite purposeful things, including getting to where he got to, which is a pretty staggering feat given the level of security there was there," he said.
Once detained, Mr Gill-Webb's behaviour was described as "somewhat unusual" and no ticket was found on him.
Det Con Kevin Guest said the defendant had given some "no comment" answers and had signed a statement as "Alan Cumming", suggesting that he was the Scottish actor.
Mr Gill-Webb's DNA was found on the bottle and he is seen throwing it in CCTV footage.
Witnesses said they heard him shout at the finalists, including Bolt, fellow Jamaican sprinter Yohan Blake, and US sprinter Justin Gatlin.
Student Farzin Mirshahi said she had heard him yell: "Believe in Blake, no Usain."
Security guard Robert Spears said he had feared Mr Gill-Webb was going to disrupt the Games.
"At no point did he ever try to explain himself or deny what I had seen, but just demanded to know who had won the race," he added.
The trial continues.