Sports journalist in coma after Bethnal Green assault

Gary Carter and his wife - credit: Gemma Carter Twitter

Gary Carter and wife Gemma Pic: Gemma Carter

A well known sports journalist remains in a critical condition after being assaulted in Bethnal Green in the early hours of last Friday morning.

Gary Carter, a 36-year-old freelance sports journalist from Greater Manchester is in an induced coma, after having a blood clot surgically removed from his brain during emergency surgery.

His wife, Gemma Carter, has been told to take his recovery “an hour at a time.” She told the BBC that she is “trying to stay calm and keep positive and draw from all the support I’m getting on social media.”

Carter, who regularly writes for the Sun, was in London to cover the England v New Zealand rugby league match and was admitted to the Royal London Hospital. He has now been moved to Papworth Hospital in Cambridge and doctors have said it is too early to tell if he has suffered brain damage.

Last Saturday, James Flanagan from Kentish Town pleaded guilty at Thames Magistrates’ Court to grievous bodily harm, but was released on bail and will be sentenced at Snaresbrook Crown Court on November 24.  It emerged he punched and kicked Flanagan to the floor, who then struck his head on the pavement and suffered injuries to the head.

Police were called to Cambridge Heath Road at 1am, where Carter was found with serious head injuries outside Bethnal Green Underground Station, Scotland Yard said.

Messages of support have poured in from social media. Former England striker and BBC sports analyst Alan Shearer tweeted: “Best wishes to Gary Carter for a full recovery after suffering an awful attack last week” and Sun football commentator Neil Custis wrote: “Top guy and top journalist, victim of a dreadful attack. You can pull through Gary.”

‘The England team sends its best wishes to him and his family and hope he makes a speedy recovery,” said England Coach Steve McNamara at the post-match press conference.

A 22-year-old man was also arrested in connection with the attack, on suspicion of fighting with attending paramedics and on suspicion of conspiracy to commit GBH. He has been bailed until late November.

By Tara Dein

Leave a Reply