DCI Banks star Stephen Tompkinson has broken his silence after he was acquitted of punching a man unconscious during a noise argument.
The 57-year-old actor was previously accused of causing grievous bodily harm to Karl Poole.
The allegations against Tompkinson came after Mr Poole suffered a traumatic brain injury outside the socialite’s home in Whitley Bay, North Tyneside.
A court previously overheard Mr Poole and a pal laughing and “lying on the way” in the early hours of the morning as Tompkinson approached them and the alleged incident unfolded.
But after a two-year battle, the Ballykissangel star was cleared of all charges at Newcastle Crown Court last week.
Speaking for the first time since his acquittal, he told ITV’s Lorraine this morning the whole trial had been a “little bit of a nightmare”.
He said: “I knew I hadn’t done anything wrong [but] it had to be answered.
Aware of the seriousness of Mr Poole’s injury, Tompkinson said it definitely “needed to be investigated” but could have been “much earlier”.
Recalling that evening in May 2021, Tompkinson told the talk show host, “It was about four-thirty on a sunny morning in late May, a beautiful day, and these two guys showed up, one in just his briefs and socks.”
“His friend, who was also very disheveled, incredibly insecure.
“They were the epitome of drunk and disorderly – several other people on the street had heard the commotion.”
“They drank from a large bottle of Jägermeister, which you won’t find alongside sherry or port.
“They were in a terrible state. Turns out the guy was four times over the alcohol limit, so I called the police.
“I was afraid this bottle would break where a seven year old is playing with her skateboard and bike indoors.
“They didn’t seem terrible at all, they just kept going. We’ve all been drunk at times.”
Tompkinson said after telling the men he was going to call the police, “They got a little angry and turned on me.”
He said: “I stopped one of them from advancing with my open palm.
“Due to his condition, he fell and fell about eight feet from me, hit the back of his head and suffered a very serious brain injury.”
“No kidding, that had to be investigated.
“[But] I figured it could have been investigated much sooner and done right away rather than waiting two years.”
Originally from Stockton-on-Tees, Teesside, Tompkinson became a household name after playing the role of Father Peter Clifford in 1996’s Ballykissangel.
That same year he appeared as Phil in the hit film Brassed Off.
Other TV series starring Tompkinson include Drop The Dead Donkey, Wild At Heart, Minder, New Tricks, Grafters, and Ted And Alice.
In 1994 he won a British Comedy Award for Best TV Actor for his performance in Drop The Dead Donkey.
He was with DCI Banks for six years until the show was canceled in 2016.