Nottingham man given increased sentence for racially aggravated threats

27/01/2017

A Nottingham man has been given a community order for aggressive and threatening behaviour, a sentence uplifted due to the racist nature of his offences.

Steven Spencer behaved aggressively towards an Asian member of staff working on a housing complex in the city, threatening him with violence. The next day, the member of staff returned to carry out further duties at the site with another colleague in attendance due to the threats and abuse he had experienced the day before.

Spencer continued with his aggressive behaviour, threatening violence to the victim and using derogatory racist terms on at least three occasions. He repeated his racist language in the presence of police after his arrest. He pleaded guilty to racially aggravated threatening words or behaviour at a hearing in November and was today sentenced at Nottingham Magistrates Court.

Nigel Chapman, District Crown Prosecutor and hate crime lead for CPS East Midlands said: "Steven Spencer subjected his victim to foul-mouthed, threatening abuse with clear evidence that his actions were motivated by hostility towards the victim's ethnicity, using racist insults at least three times in his tirade. The threatening abuse he dished out was a criminal offence in its own right, but this was aggravated by the racist nature of the offending.

"The CPS prosecutor in court applied for an uplift to the sentence according to hate crime legislation. The court agreed, increasing Spencer's sentence from a fine, which would have been the appropriate penalty for the abuse on its own, to a twelve-month community order, which includes a rehabilitation activity requirement to help him address his behaviour in future. He was also ordered to pay £100 compensation to the victim.

"Hate crimes, including racially aggravated offences such as these, are crimes the Crown Prosecution Service takes extremely seriously. They are highly personal attacks and have a profound impact in the individual victims and on the community as a whole."