A FATHER-OF-TWO ‘begged for help’ after being stabbed more than 30 times in the eye, mouth and face following a pub brawl, a court heard.

Charlie Ward, of Eltham Avenue, Slough, was today sentenced again for the murder of Jason Gardner having been sent to prison once before following a trial in late 2018.

Following a re-trial in June and July 2021, Ward was told he will serve 20 years behind bars for his part in the May 2018 incident.

READ MORE: Father and son convicted after fatal pub fight

This is a reduction from the original sentence handed down in January 2019, when he was told he would serve 22 years in jail.

He will continue his stay in prison alongside his father, John Ward, who was sentenced to nine years behind bars for his part in the incident after being convicted of manslaughter in 2019.

The brawl occurred at the Earl of Cornwall pub on Cippenham Lane when Mr Gardner, a father of two, attacked Charlie Ward, who was drinking at the pub with his wife, mother and father.


Earl of Cornwall pub on Cippenham Lane

Earl of Cornwall pub on Cippenham Lane


Ward, who had a Stanley knife in his possession, retaliated and stabbed the punter more than 30 times including in the eye, mouth and face.

Gardner ‘begged for help’ during the attack, a court heard, and suffered a cardiac arrest from his injuries.

But a court heard his injuries were ‘unsurvivable’ and he passed away shortly after the horrific incident.

READ MORE: Tribute to murder victim who died in pub brawl

Prosecuting, Rossano Scamardella said Ward first ‘caused trouble’ in The Long Barn pub ‘with his poor behaviour’ after he threw a pint of beer at a barmaid who had refused to serve him a drink for his wife, who was wearing a dressing gown and no shoes.

The prosecution claimed Ward took a knife out of his pocket following this incident.

“The only reason he had the knife about his person was to use it as a weapon should the need arise”, Mr Scamardella said.

Gardner was in The Long Barn with Ward and after a disagreement, the pair shook hands and moved on from the incident.

A court heard how Ward then got a lift to the Earl of Cornwall pub where he was attacked by Mr Gardner.

He reached for the knife “almost immediately” after being struck by the aggressor and subjected him to “indescribable physical and mental suffering prior to his death”.

Mr Scamardella added: “He got himself to the door to be dragged back into the pub.

“When he was assisted for first aid he begged them for help.

“The evidence from the pathologist was that the injuries were unsurvivable.”


 Jason Gardner

Jason Gardner


READ MORE: Pub fight that ended with stabbings sees father and son jailed

Defending, Jeremy Dean said Ward had gone to the Earl of Cornwall pub to “distance himself” from the trouble at The Long Barn.

Mr Dean argued the Judge should pass a more lenient sentence as Ward had not intended to use the knife as a weapon and he was socialising with his family when the incident occurred.

“This was a tragic but quick incident in the course of which a significant number of injuries were sustained.

“He had distanced himself from trouble and he was attacked. He used the knife initially in self-defence and his criminality spanned two minutes.

“He was not looking for trouble.

“Within the space of two minutes, the lives of two families were devastated.”

Ward has been in custody for two years and has had one visit from his wife -- who is the mother of his seven children aged between three and 17-years-old -- in that time.

His Honour Judge Nawaz said he accepted Jason Gardner attacked Charlie Ward first.

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Sentencing, he said: “He [Mr Gardner] was much-loved by his family.

“No sentence this court or any other court can impose can make up for what his family has suffered.”

Judge Nawaz said he could “not explain” why Gardner went to attack Ward after they shook hands outside The Long Barn.

He continued: “Having found out where Charlie Ward was, Mr Gardner entered the Earl of Cornwall just after 11.30pm.


Charlie Ward, left, and John Ward, right

Charlie Ward, left, and John Ward, right


“He launched a vicious attack on Charlie Ward striking him to the head with a large metal torch.

“Charlie Ward was then within seconds armed with something in his right hand. He was seen to use that object as a weapon.

“The crown accepts Mr Ward was allowed to defend himself but what he went on to do was entirely inappropriate.

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“Such was his determination to continue to attack that when his mother took hold of him he broke free to continue the attack.

“It must have been obvious to him that Mr Gardner was already seriously injured.”

Imposing his sentence, Judge Nawaz took into account that Mr Gardner was the instigator of the brawl.

He sentenced Ward to 20 years in jail following his convictions for murder and possession of a bladed article, down from the 22 years initially handed to him in 2019.

Of this sentence, he has already served nearly four years behind bars.

Charlie Ward appeared via video link at Reading Crown Court on Thursday, September 2.

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