A West Bromwich Albion fan has been convicted of racial abuse of Romaine Sawyers on social media.
Simon Silwood, 50, of Kingswinford, had denied being accused of posting a “grossly offensive or indecent, obscene and threatening” message on social media.
He will be sentenced on September 30.
Mr Silwood’s defense claimed that when he posted the word “baboon” he actually intended to use the word “jester”, but it was automatically corrected on his phone when sending .
The message was released on January 26 after West Brom lost 5-0 to Manchester City.
Sky Sports News Journalist Rob Dorsett was among members of the media who watched the proceedings via video link due to coronavirus restrictions inside the courtroom. However, the video link often broke down and parts of the procedure were missed.
Opening the case against Mr Silwood on Thursday, prosecutor Simon Brownsey said: “The prosecution case is that the message Mr Silwood posted to the West Bromwich Albion Fan Zone Whatsapp group was intentionally posted and was blatant racism to black professional footballer Romaine Sawyers. “
There was expert testimony from the prosecution who felt that this was an unlikely result of the automatic correction.
However, a defense IT specialist said he tested Mr Silwood’s phone and found it to be an achievable result.