A TEENAGE thug who instigated a mass brawl at a 16th birthday party has narrowly avoided jail.

Jermaine Brooks, aged 18, started a fight with his girlfriend’s ex-partner Samuel Green, which led to him being punched and kicked by a gang of at least five people.

The incident took place on March 20 last year at the 16th birthday party of Isabel Roberts at the Masonic Hall in Farnworth.

Bolton Crown Court heard that during the party, tensions grew between Mr Green — the former boyfriend of Taylor Percival — and her then partner, Brooks, who was 17 at the time.

That tension led Ms Robert’s mother, Janet, to end the party at 10.30pm and attempt to escort Mr Green to her car to take him home.

Prosecuting, Gavin Howie said: “But he didn’t get there because Jermaine Brooks, with a number of friends, led what was an assault on Samuel Green.

“It is indisputable that this emanated from Jermaine Brooks, he dashed forward and others piled in and before long Samuel Green was being punched and kicked by up to five persons."

The court heard that one of the adults supervising the party, Christopher Hadcroft, tried to break up the brawl and was also assaulted by the group.

Mr Howie added: “It was a nasty little incident, mercifully the injuries amounted only to bruises and abrasions but it could have been so much worse.”

Brooks had previously pleaded guilty to affray along with five others.

They were Elliot Neale, 18, of Clifton Street Kearsley; Nathan Bevan, 21 of Northfield Street, Bolton; Malik Handley, 17, of Charlesworth Avenue, Bolton; Jack Lovedale, 18, of Rawson Road, Bolton and Tomas Coen, 17, of Highfield Road, Farnworth.

While the rest of the group was sentenced in April, Brooks’ sentencing had been adjourned while a report was prepared.

That report explained that he had suffered with a number of “personal difficulties” in the past and the court also heard that he had an issue with alcohol.

He also has a previous conviction relating to punching an opposing player during a junior football match.

Sentencing Brooks to 10 months in a young offenders institute, suspended for 12 months and a curfew, Judge Timothy Clayson said: “These sorts of incidents are going to land you in prison if they continue.

“It is only the fact that you are young and have had a lot of personal difficulties that mean I have not given you an immediate custodial sentence today.”

He added: “But this is your last chance as far as this court is concerned.”