Ex-Premier League star Marcus Bent facing jail after threatening police with kitchen knife and meat cleaver

Marcus-Bent (1)

Former Premier League footballer Marcus Bent is facing jail after he admitted threatening police officers with a kitchen knife and a meat cleaver.

The former Everton, Ipswich and Charlton player was Tasered during the incident at his home in Esher, Surrey, last September, a court heard.

The ex-England U21 international, 37, had initially denied charges of affray and possession of bladed articles but pleaded guilty to charge of possession of a Class A drug, namely cocaine.

But today he changed his plea to guilty to affray at Guildford Crown Court, sitting at Guildford Magistrates Court.

The two further charges of possessing a bladed article will be left to lie on file as they are incorporated into the charge of affray.

The court heard how the incident began when Bent called police reporting a break-in at his flat, claiming he had locked himself in his flat to evade intruders.

But when officers arrived, Bent rushed out and raised the cleaver at an officer, prompting a colleague to deploy his Taser on the former footballer.

The policeman feared he was going to be “chopped”, a judge heard.

PAFormer Premier League footballer Marcus Bent arrives with his partner at Guildford Magistrates' Court, Surrey
Guilty: Marcus Bent had initially denied two charges but changed his plea at Guildford Court today

Prosecutor Lee Harris told the court: “On September 13 at around 9:30pm that night, the police received a 999 call from the defendant.

“He was reporting that intruders had broken into his flat and that he had locked himself in his bathroom, seeking protection.

“He went on to say the intruders were trying to get into the bathroom – they were pulling on the door.

“A few minutes later officers arrived at the address. They were buzzed-in by another resident (in the block of flats).”

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Scott Heppell/PA WireTaser stun gun
Bizarre: Bent had initially called police reporting a break-in and said he was hiding in his bathroom

“They knocked on the door of the defendant’s flat, telling him to open the door. A number of officers were present.

“The defendant rushed out of the flat. He was holding a knife in one hand and a meat cleaver in the other hand.

“One of the officers describes the knife as a 15-inch chef’s knife, in his right hand. He says he had a large meat cleaver in his left hand.

“He raised it towards another officer’s head and neck area. He believed he was going to chop the other officer with the cleaver.

“The officer deployed his Taser and the defendant fell to the floor as a consequence.

“It’s the Crown’s case he rushed from his flat holding two weapons, targeting those weapons towards the attending police officers and had to be Tasered as a consequence.”

Judge Stephen Climie was told Bent – who scored 113 goals in more than 500 games as a professional before hanging up his boots in 2012 – had initially pleaded not guilty to the charges of possessing the weapons as he was on private property when he was tackled by police.

Judge Climie said: “On paper it is quite a disturbing set of events.

“It is a case where on the face of it a custodial sentence is justified, but I am not going to prejudge before sentencing.”

Bent, who has previously dated model Danielle Lloyd and actress Gemma Atkinson, is due to be sentenced at the same court on February 12.

The crown court will sentence him for the drug offence at the same time.

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Bent was given unconditional bail by Judge Climie.

The ex-England U21 player made his professional debut with Brentford in 1995 and played for 14 clubs during his career before retiring in 2012.

He played 574 games and scored 113 goals for clubs including Ipswich Town, Wigan Athletic, Crystal Palace, Sheffield United and Blackburn Rovers.

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