Matthew Bion manslaughter trial: Woman describes moment her partner was fatally injured outside Billericay bar

Police car outside Reid's bar Billericay

Article by Ellis Whitehouse: The partner of a man who died after being knocked to the floor outside an Essex bar said he was "trying to break up a fight", a court has heard.

Matthew Bion, who attended the bar with his partner and friends, was allegedly punched to the floor and died several days later from a traumatic brain injury sustained in the fall.

Dennie Griffiths and Jade Chambers are currently on trial at Basildon Crown Court and today the partner of victim Mr Bion took to the witness box to give evidence.

Mr Bion, 31, from Wickford, died on August 27, 2019, nine days after he was forced to the floor outside Reid's in Laindon Road, Billericay on August 18.

Griffiths, 28, of Hermitage Drive, Laindon, denies manslaughter, while his partner Jade Chambers, 24, also of Hermitage Drive, denies assisting an offender.

The trial previously heard that Mr Bion, a father of two, had gone to the venue with his partner and a group of friends, when an incident developed between the group and another group of people in the early hours of the morning of August 18.

Mr Bion's partner told the court that a "petty" argument about people dancing with each other had begun in their group, and Mr Bion had tried to diffuse it, but then walked away to the other side of the road.

Prosecuting, Cyrus Shroff said:

"I think it's right isn't it that there was then some pulling of hair between the girls. Your friend was involved in that?"

Mr Bion's partner, who appeared behind screens in court, said: "Correct".

Mr Shroff said: "What was Matthew doing at that point?"

The woman said: "He began to walk over to stop them from fighting."

Mr Shroff said: "What was the ginger male [Griffiths] doing at that point?"

The woman said:

"He came around from the back and began to what can only be described as jumping around like a boxer would do in a boxing ring. His hands were up and he was jumping from side to side."

Mr Shroff said: "What did the ginger male then do?"

The woman said: "He then swung his arms forward but it didn't make contact with Matthew or I.

"He then reached out again and this time made contact with Matthew.

"It was a forceful motion upwards. Very forceful."

The woman said Mr Bion made no effort to break his fall and had been "calm" before he was struck.

She said Griffiths had then run off, adding "I asked someone to get him.

Mr Shroff said: "This may sound like a silly question, but why?"

The woman replied: "Because he's dangerous."

The woman said she had used her jacket to put under Mr Bion's head to try and stop the bleeding and waited until the ambulance arrived.

When asked by Mr Shroff how often she thinks about the incident, the woman, becoming emotional, replied: "Every day."

The trial continues.

Article by Ellis Whitehouse, EssexLive