2012 Local Elections: Liberal Democrat And Labour Candidates In Punch-Up

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Tempers are starting to fray in the local elections | PA

Police were forced to break up a late-night election count fracas on Thursday evening.

A row broke out as Liberal Democrats in Labour-controlled St Helen's suffered a series of setbacks, leading to disappointment for the party's leader on the council, Brian Spencer who lost his seat.

According to witnesses at St Helen's Town Hall there was a confrontation between Mr Spencer and Labour candidate Mark Johnson, who fell across a table and landed on his mother.

Labour councillor Andy Bowden said: "As the results were coming in it was becoming clear the Lib Dems had lost quite a few seats."

He added: "There were quite a lot of police in the room and at least two interjected and separated everyone."

Coun Bowden said Mr Johnson may have twisted his ankle and was giving a statement to police.

It is understood police officers intervened, but no arrests were made.

Lib Dem councillor Michael Haw said Mr Spencer, the council's ex-opposition leader, was upset at losing his seat.

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