FIVE people have walked free from court following an assault rampage which injured two men from Northwich.

Andrew Price, of Charter Street in Accrington, and Steven Finney, John Gray, John Varey and Margaret Varey, all of Hares Lane in Frodsham, were part of a group on a night out drinking in Frodsham town centre when the incident occurred shortly before 12.30am on Sunday, June 16.

The quintet assaulted a couple from Frodsham who asked members to stop urinating on a wall on Church Street, leaving a 38-year-old man with a broken jaw, before following them as they fled to The Cholmondeley Arms.

Here, Price, 24; Finney, 29; Gray, 30; John Varey, 33, and Margaret Varey, 32, began to randomly assault people outside the pub.

A 26-year-old man from the Northwich area sustained a fractured eye socket after he was punched in the side of the face by Price when looking in a different direction.

He was then kicked by Finney whilst he was lying on the floor, who also punched a 38-year-old Northwich man in the face.

That victim was also punched repeatedly by Gray and John Varey, as well as being hit in the head by Margaret Varey using the stiletto heel on one of her shoes.

Margaret Varey punched a 36-year-old woman from Helsby in the face too, whilst John Varey and Gray punched a 39-year-old man.

Those victims were all bystanders.

The couple who were originally assaulted in Church Street were also attacked again outside the pub.

The offenders had fled the scene when police arrived, but officers were able to identify them all and subsequently secure charges.

Price pleaded guilty to inflicting grievous bodily harm without intent in relation to the Northwich man who sustained a fractured eye socket.

Finney, Gray, John Varey and Margaret Varey all admitted a charge of affray.

Price pleaded not guilty to affray and Finney denied charges of assault by beating.

The defendants were sentenced at Chester Crown Court, where Price was handed a one-year prison sentence, suspended for 18 months.

Finney, Gray, John Varey and Margaret Varey were all given eight-month custodial sentences, suspended for a year.

Price, Finney and Gray were also ordered to carry out 180 hours of unpaid work and to adhere to rehabilitation activity requirements.

John Varey and Margaret Varey have to carry out 200 hours of unpaid work.

All of the offenders also have to each pay a £140 victim surcharge and are prohibited from entering licensed premises in Frodsham for nine months, unless they have permission from the licensee.

Detective constable Rebecca Lawson, who led the investigation on behalf of Cheshire Police, said: “I would like to thank all the officers involved in this case for all their hard work in identifying and securing evidence against the five offenders.

“Part of a group that were out drinking in Frodsham town centre that night, the offenders all assaulted innocent bystanders outside The Cholmondeley Arms.

“Victims were either in the wrong place at the wrong time or had gone towards the offenders to try to calm the situation down and protect people who were being assaulted.

“Several people suffered facial injuries. Four of them had to go to hospital for treatment and the injuries sustained included a broken jaw and a fractured eye socket.

“I hope the victims can move forward with their lives now that this case has concluded.

“I also hope this case highlights that here at Cheshire Police, we will do everything in our power to identify and secure evidence against violent offenders.”