Mum punched by thug at Royal Blood gig thought she was going to die

A mum punched by a drunken thug at a Royal Blood gig thought she was going to die.

Alicia Crook was punched in the face by teenager Charlie Shuttleworth at the concert at the Manchester Arena.

Shuttleworth later told British Transport Police he ‘turned around and punched the person directly behind’ after his shirt was ripped in a mosh pit, reports the Manchester Evening News .

The 33-year-old mum-of-one, had driven to the gig with her sister, a friend and her 16-year-old niece with the tickets having been birthday presents.

She suffered a huge cut across her left eyebrow and a fractured eye socket, injuries she claimed were likened by medics to ‘car crash’ injuries.

Shuttleworth, 19, a complete stranger to Alicia, has now been locked up following the attack last November. He’ll serve half of a 14-month sentence in custody and the other half out on licence.

Alicia, who said she loved festivals and concerts, has only been to one gig since. She said she was talked into going by friends, but left shortly after the start.

"Gigs are not fun anymore," she said.

The mum, from Skelmersdale, West Lancashire, said she first noticed Shuttleworth as the Royal Blood gig had only just started – and described him as ‘off his head’.

"We were near the front, close to the mosh pit," she said.

"It was quite rowdy and giddy, but nothing out of the ordinary. I go to gigs two or three times a month and go to festivals. It was just normal, excited behaviour as you would expect.

"People were falling over in the mosh pit and the person who punched me was really rowdy. He was really aggressive. We tried to move to the right away from him. He was off his head and I knew that someone was going to be hurt.

"People were trying to get out of his way. He was running into the middle of the mosh pit through people. He was doing it to men and women and I thought that there was going to be a fight.

"By the third song I noticed he was stood straight in front of me. He looked over his shoulder, spun around and punched me right in the face. I was shocked but it all happened in a few seconds. I couldn’t see.

"At that stage a group of men jumped on him and tried to restrain him. People were trying to hold him down but he escaped. After the first punch I thought he would stop. There was absolutely no reason for it. I thought he was going to kill me and even now, I think that if other people had not stepped in, it would have been worse.

"He was intent on carrying on."

Alicia was assessed by first aiders then driven to hospital. She was under specialist care for around six months and needed five weeks off work.

"He was like a spoilt brat who had a tantrum," she said. "I hope he learns not to get so drunk in the future. In court he did say sorry."

Shuttleworth pleaded guilty to assault occasioning actual bodily harm and was sentenced at Manchester Crown Court.

Detective Constable Richard King said Alicia was left covered in blood.

"This was an horrific and completely unprovoked attack on an innocent young woman who was simply enjoying a music concert only for Shuttleworth to violently attack her," he said.

"Shuttleworth claims his actions were down to the amount of alcohol he had consumed that night – this is a stark reminder that we should all know our limits when drinking – those extra drinks have cost him seven months behind bars and a criminal record."

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