Fine for woman who yelled homophobic abuse in Lewes

08/08/2017

A woman who yelled homophobic abuse at a man in Lewes has been fined £249.

The victim was abused outside his shop in Cliffe High Street during a row with a woman about how she had parked outside the shop, as it was interfering with his business.

The woman, Patricia Pavey, aged 80, was issued with a parking ticket by a traffic enforcement officer, as her vehicle was not moved within the required three hour period. An argument broke out first between the officer and the defendant and the victim joined in on the discussion, challenging the woman about her poor parking and her behaviour towards him.

She then became angry with the victim for reporting her over her parking and made homophobic comments towards him.

Following a trial at Brighton Magistrates' Court, Ms. Pavey was convicted of using threatening, abusive or insulting words or behaviour to cause harassment, alarm or distress. Had it not been for the homophobic nature of the comments, she would only have fined £166. She was also ordered to pay £250 and a victim surcharge of £30. A restraining order was also imposed, meaning she cannot park outside the victimís shop for two years.

Gareth Morgan, from the CPS, said: "We all know that issues such as parking can be emotive subjects, but there is no place in our society for homophobic language to be used, whatever the situation is. It is completely unacceptable and that is why any form of hate crime is taken so seriously by the CPS, be it homophobic, transphobic, racist, religious or disability.

"The courts also take these matters seriously and that's why the fine was increased in this case, with a sentencing uplift, so anyone committing any hate crime, be it verbal or physical abuse can expect to receive an increased sentence."

Tackling hate crime is one of the priorities for CPS South East, which serves Kent, Surrey and Sussex and we aim to promote successful convictions on hate crimes. More information about the work we are doing to tackle hate crime, including other convictions, can be found on the tackling hate crime section of our website.