Women joined racist mob which attacked Kurdish family, Plymouth Crown Court hears
TWO women joined a racist mob which attacked and abused a terrified Kurdish family in a city centre takeaway, a court heard.
Hayley Wells, aged 28, and 30-year-old Kelly Watterson were part of a group which spilled out of a pub and hurled vile abuse on a Sunday afternoon.
Someone threw a glass which smashed next to a baby in a car seat inside the Istanbul kebab shop in Exeter Street, Plymouth Crown Court heard.
Wells scratched the boy's mother on the arm and Watterson admitted she was drunk and aggressive as part of the mob, which had been attending a meeting of the English Defence League.
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The mother and her partner were so shaken that they have since sold the takeaway.
Recorder Paul Derbyshire said: "This was a shocking and violent incident which left these victims in a distressed state.
"This has led to the closure of the business and they have moved away."
He handed Wells a suspended prison sentence and Watterson a community order. Both must do hefty periods of unpaid work.
Watterson, of St Peter's Road, Manadon, admitted one count of affray and Wells, of Shell Close, Leigham, admitted one count of religiously aggravated common assault on August 31, 2011.
Kelly Scrivener, for the Crown Prosecution Service, said the male victim arrived at the shop at about 2pm to see a large group of men and women gathered outside the nearby Wild Coyote pub.
He added they racially abused him and told him to "go back to his own country".
Miss Scrivener said someone in the group threw a glass object, which smashed on his car.
She added the two defendants kicked the door of the shop and Wells scratched the woman's arm.
The court heard the mob continued to shout "EDL" and further racist abuse.
Miss Scrivener said an unknown member of the group threw a glass which smashed close to her infant son in a car seat.
She added Wells and Watterson were pulled away by men in the group.
Wells told police in interview that she believed all Muslims were extremists and if she saw a woman in a burka it would make her angry.
She admitted to officers that she organised EDL meetings and had been drinking and taking amphetamine.
Miss Scrivener said Watterson, the best friend of Wells, admitted being drunk and aggressive and said she was swept along with the group.
The court heard a statement from the victim which said she still feels "very frightened" walking around the city centre.
She said her partner sold the takeaway, because he was too afraid to work so close to the pub.
Deni Matthews, for Wells, said the offence was 18 months old and a probation officer believed she was unlikely to reoffend.
He added since that time her partner and the father of her child had died in a road accident. Darren Walsh, aged 20, crashed a car in Leigham after drinking and smoking cannabis.
Mr Matthews said: "She suffered from effectively a stroke in short terms and it left her with difficulties."
He added: "She has three children and is a good and proper mother."
Jason Beal, for Watterson, said: "She was very drunk and became involved in an argument involving others. She expresses remorse and contrition."
He added she was doing a college course in beauty.
The judge handed Wells a three-month prison sentence suspended for two years under probation supervision. She must do 200 hours unpaid work and pay the victim £100 in compensation.
Watterson was given a 12-month community order under probation supervision with 150 hours unpaid work. She must also pay £100 in compensation to the victim.
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