EMMERDALE’S Mark Jordon has said that he spent his wedding fund on legal fees to clear his name over his assault charge.
The 54-year-old star was celebrating his engagement to Laura Norton when he got into a scuffle with 68-year-old Andrew Potts last July.
Earlier this week, Mark – who played Daz Spencer in the ITV soap – was cleared of assault after the court was told that he acted in self-defence.
The actor has now revealed that he was forced to spend his and Laura’s five-figure savings on lawyers to fight for his innocence as he did not qualify for legal aid.
He explained: “I was at home watching the wedding fund being spent on barristers fees. Watching it dwindle.
“But now we can start all over we’re already discussing plans.”
Mark added to the Sunday People: “Now I’m finally looking forward to what’s around the corner.”
Addressing the impact that the accusations have had on his fiancee, Mark shared: “One week after our engagement Laura should have been floating on air, making plans, looking for venues, drawing up guest lists.
“But for over a year she didn’t get that opportunity. It took all the enjoyment away.”
Laura, who plays Kerry Wyatt in Emmerdale, was joined by several of their co-stars in the public gallery throughout Mark’s seven-day trial, and the star went on to praise their unwavering show of support.
He explained: “My colleagues have been wonderful. I’m blessed that they sat in the public gallery every day.
“Seeing them there kept me strong. It was incredible that they turned up every day.”
Mark was arrested on July 1 2018 after biting Andrew Potts following a row over his then-17-year-old daughter Poppy outside the Farrars Arms in Oldham.
In a police interview, Mark said Mr. Potts and his partner Rosalind O’Neill had called his daughter a “slag” and that he had a video of her which he would post on YouTube.
Poppy had been straddling a teenage family friend in the beer garden, with Mrs. O’Neill allegedly remarking: “I hope they’re using protection.”
Video footage played in court showed Mark being held back from Mr Potts, at one point by his hair.
The court heard Mr. Potts also punched and kicked Mark, who sustained a bloody nose in the scuffle.
The jury was told the fight ended when the pensioner was ushered away from the pub.
But prosecutors said Mark spotted Mr. Potts again as he sat in a taxi on his way home.
When questioned by police, Mark claimed he got out of the taxi when he saw the 68-year-old returning to the pub and worried what he was going to do.
He added he bit down on Mr. Potts’s thumb as a “natural reaction” to having his hand inside his mouth.
Describing the moment when he bit Mr Potts’s eyebrow, he said: “Just sheer panic and fear and he had pulled me so close at one point I was worried I was going to get more injuries than I already had.
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“It looked like he was snarling so I was worried he was maybe going to try to retaliate with a bite.
“I did exactly what he was going to do.
“It was not planned. It was pure instinct.”
Mark was found not guilty of affray, unlawful wounding and assault.
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