'I turned round and I got a broken bottle stuck into my eye'

A MAN who was hit in the face with a broken bottle in an unprovoked pub attack has been told he may never see from one eye again.

Bryan Colbecki, 35, was knocked unconscious during a brawl in a West Lothian pub on Friday night and awoke to find a beer bottle sticking out of his eye socket.

Surgeons operated on the eye on Sunday, but have said he only has a very slim chance of regaining his vision.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

The father-of-one was the victim of an unprovoked attack after a bar fight broke out at around 11.30pm at the Lithgae Arms in Linlithgow.

Speaking from his hospital bed, Mr Colbecki said: "I was having a quiet pint with my friend and a young mob came in who started battling.

"They started on a guy that was sitting at the bar and the next thing the boy with me was hit. When I turned around to see what happened I got a broken Budweiser bottle stuck into my eye. It knocked me out for a few seconds and when I came to I realised it was stuck right into my eye."

The group involved fled the pub, heading west along High Street towards the West Port, while Mr Colbecki was rushed to St John's Hospital in Livingston before being transferred to the Princess Alexandra Eye Pavilion in Edinburgh.

Mr Colbecki suffered a fractured cheek bone, retina damage and an injured eye socket.

"(Doctors] are saying the chances are my sight won't come back; they said they are 99.9 per cent sure. The whole thing has been totally horrific and it's even worse today because they have taken the patch off and I can see the mess of my face. I've got a split cheek bone and been left with a face like the elephant man.

"I've had an operation and had scans but there's absolutely no vision by my right eye just now."

Despite the low prospects of recovery, Mr Colbecki, from Maddiston in Falkirk, has refused to lose heart. "You just have to dust yourself down and get on with things," he said.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Detective Constable George Richardson from Lothian and Borders CID, who is investigating the attack, said police were appealing for witnesses.

"This appears to be an unprovoked attack with little thought for the victim or the potential outcome," he said.

"I do not know what it was about, but we can say it's a serious and profound injury.

"This crime doesn't appear to be related to any other inquiries. It's unusual to say the least."

The pub's licensee said: "This is usually a quiet wee pub.

"Like anywhere we have had a few squabbles but nothing like this.

"I'm shocked and gutted about what happened."

A police spokesman said: "This was an unprovoked attack which has resulted in the victim receiving a serious eye injury. "We are keen to hear from anyone who was within the Lithgae Arms between 11pm and 11.30pm on Friday."