28 September 2009


"# A few months later on the night of 6th/7th September 2008, he was in town in the company of two others. They had all been drinking and they were cross because they had been, no doubt justifiably, refused entry to a further public house. In that state of mind they saw a group of people on the balcony of some nearby flats who were in the course of enjoying themselves at a party. They conceived some entirely unreasonable objection to them. They made an attempt to enter by kicking down the door of the building and when that failed they invaded the balcony by climbing a lamppost. There they assaulted the people seen. This man, Barratt, assaulted three people. He punched, he bit, he kicked and he used his head.

# The group which was attacked happened to be Polish. The offender added insult to injury and made his offence worse by shouting abuse at them based on their country of origin and did that from the outset of seeing them. After the event when the police were called the group of which this offender was part boasted to the police of having got the better of some foreigners and suggested, falsely, that they had been under attack. In interview he suggested that he had been provoked by being spat at from the balcony.

# The three victims of these assaults suffered some, but happily not lasting, injury. One of them had very nasty bruising and a black eye, together with discomfort and pain for which he had to take painkillers for several days. Another had superficial lacerations. A third had a degree of concussion, bruising around the eye, and a possible fracture of the cheekbone and, for safety's sake, was detained in hospital for two days.

From the Attorney General Reference No 45 OF 2009 [2009] EWCA Crim 1759.

This sort of thing happens every other weekend up and down Blighty.

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