Football fan jailed for running on pitch and punching Jack Grealish found dead aged 32

16 March 2023, 15:03 | Updated: 16 March 2023, 15:24

Paul Mitchell was jailed in 2019 after running onto the pitch and punching Jack Grealish
Paul Mitchell was jailed in 2019 after running onto the pitch and punching Jack Grealish. Picture: West Midlands Police/Sky News

By Asher McShane

The football fan jailed for running onto a pitch and punching Jack Grealish has been found dead.

Paul Mitchell was jailed in 2019 after pleading guilty to assault and invading the pitch ‘as a joke’.

He was also given a 10-year ban from football matches.

He was found dead at an address in Birmingham earlier this week.

Family and friends paid tribute on social media with his mum writing: “Our family loved him so much.” Other football fans have shared tributes to Mitchell on social media.

"Absolutely gutted mate.. we had some mad childhood memories I will cherish for the rest of my life.. rest easy one of my best old friends mate...till we meet again KRO," friend Ash Herbert posted on Facebook.

Another posted: "He was a good lad RIP Paul."

"Rivalry aside, he’s way to young to go, RIP Paul, rest easy," one Aston Villa fan posted online.

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His cousin Lucy told The Sun: “Paul absolutely adored his three children. He always had a big smile on his face no matter what. He had the kindest heart. He is sadly going to be missed by a lot of people.”

He was arrested after running onto the pitch at St Andrew’s Stadium during a game against Villa in 2019.

He charged into Grealish and punched him before being wrestled off the pitch by officials.

He was given 14 weeks in jail but released after four weeks.

Mitchell said his time in prison was "the best month of my life".

“I'm not apologising for nothing,” he added.

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