A man has been found guilty of being in possession of a smoke grenade at a football match between Southend United and Gillingham United at Roots Hall on Saturday, August 6.
Joe Randall, 18, of Elham Close, Gillingham, was arrested going into the football ground just after 2.30pm on Saturday.
He was later charged with being drunk trying to enter a designated sports ground at a time during the period of a designated sporting event at that ground.
He was also charged with having a smoke grenade while trying to enter a designated sports ground at a time during the period of a designated sporting event at that ground.
He appeared at Southend Magistrates’ Court today (Friday, September 9) and pleaded guilty. He has been given a three year football banning order.
Dc Keith Baker, Essex Police’s Dedicated Football Officer for Southend United, said: “Going to a football match should be a fun and enjoyable occasion and not one where people should be concerned for their welfare.
“By trying to take a smoke grenade into the ground Joe Randall could have not only disrupted the match but also risked the safety of his fellow fans.
“I hope this banning order will send a message that Essex Police takes this kind of action very seriously, and we are determined to ensure fans of all teams coming to Roots Hall have a safe and enjoyable day”.