A GRADUATE student from the USA, who hopes to become an American Football professional, faces trial later this year accused of seriously injuring a doorman in a dispute outside a night club.

Kenyatte Lanor Allen, from Georgia state, who is at Durham University studying for a Masters degree, became involved in a row with a member of door staff, while queueing to get into Players Bar, at Walkergate, in the city, on January 15 this year.

He is accused of landing two punches on the doorman, one of which is said to have broken his jaw in two places.

Appearing at a plea hearing at Durham Crown Court, observed by members of his family in the public gallery who travelled from the US, he denied unlawfully and maliciously inflicting grievous bodily harm.

Asked what his case would be at trial, Chris Morrison, for the defendant, said he claims self-defence.

“What happens is the complainant squares up to my client, pushing him over, and the two men face up to each other and there’s a confrontation in which he struck him in self-defence.

“The grievous bodily harm was committed as he was in fear of further attack, having already been knocked over.”

Jonathan Walker, prosecuting, said the Crown had a different “take” on the incident.

Judge James Adkin adjourned the case and bailed the defendant to an address in South Terrace, Framwellgate Moor, prior to the trial, starting on May 11.

His bail conditions include not going to the Walkergate complex pending the trial.