Police charge 23 people with violent disorder after alleged trouble before Sunderland game with West Ham

POLICE have charged 23 people following an investigation into football-related disorder before Sunderland's Premier League match with West Ham.

The disorder happened at around 2.15pm on Saturday, January 12, outside Revolution Bar at Low Row in Sunderland city centre, prior to the match.

Police say an extensive investigation has taken place leading to the charging of the following people with violent disorder:

Bradley Dixon, 18, of Patton Road, Plains Farm, Sunderland; Gabriel Sheil, 26, of Windwill Way, Gateshead; Anthony Smith, 26, of Purvis Terrace in Trimdon Station, County Durham; Sean Herron, 18, of Hogarth Drive in Columbia, Washington; Connor Mccoy, 20, of Perth Avenue in Jarrow, South Tyneside; Simon Badham, 20, of Frobisher Street in Hebburn, South Tyneside; Thomas Kelly, 18, of Eight Avenue, Chester-le-Street; Shaun Baker, 28, of Gainsborough Square, Grindon, Sunderland; Christopher Webb, 23, of Launceston Drive in Sunderland; Daniel Patterson, 18, of Highbury Avenue, Springwell Village in Washington; Paul Collins, 19, of Killingworth Drive in Sunderland; Lewis Dodsworth, 18, or Bowburn Avenue, Wear View in Sunderland and Kevin Bilton, 51, of Lambton Driver in Hetton-le-Hole.

In addition, eight 16-year-old boys - three from Sunderland, two from Washington, two from Chester-le-Street and one from Spennymoor - and two 17-year-old boys - one from Sunderland and one from Chester-le-Street - have also been charged.

A 29-year-old man also arrested was subsequently released with no further action.

All 23 are due to appear at Sunderland Magistrates' Court on May 20.

A number of West Ham supporters have also been arrested in connection with the incident and they are due to answer bail next month.

Chief Superintendent Kay Blyth, Sunderland Area Commander, said: "This has been an extensive investigation and we received an excellent response from the public and there are now 23 people charged with violent disorder. They will appear at court next month, but in the meantime there are strict bail conditions in place.

"This sort of incident which happened in January is unusual and as we've said previously, the vast majority of football supporters just want to enjoy the match. However, when any kind of violence takes place we will do everything possible to make sure those suspected of being involved are traced.

"We've been working hard over recent months to tackle a minority of people suspected of being involved in football disorder to ensure the safety of those attending the upcoming derby, and this work will continue right up until kick-off."

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