CPS North East - Hate crime uplifts - May 2020
Under hate crime legislation the courts must pass increased sentences where prosecutors show evidence that offences either demonstrate or have been motivated by hostility towards a person’s race, religion, disability, transgender identity or sexuality. Below are examples of hate crime cases recently prosecuted by CPS North East, each of which resulted in a conviction and an uplifted sentence.
The Defendant was convicted of burglary of a dwelling for which he was sentenced to three years' imprisonment. When arrested, the defendant spat at the arresting officer while racially abusing him. Sentencing him to an additional four months’ imprisonment for this assault the Judge stated he had increased the sentenced by two months to reflect the racial aggravation.
The Defendant was charged with racially aggravated intentional harassment, alarm or distress after he made repeated racially abusive and threatening comments towards staff at a food takeaway. He was sentenced to 20 weeks’ imprisonment, which was uplifted by four weeks to reflect the racial aggravation, and suspended for 12 months with a three-month curfew.
The Defendant was charged with shop theft and racially aggravated fear and provocation of violence towards the shop owner. When he was challenged for stealing food items from the store he retaliated by issuing threats of violence and racist abuse. He was sentenced to a total of 30 weeks’ imprisonment which had been increased by four weeks to reflect the racial aggravation.
The Defendant was convicted of causing intentional homophobic harassment alarm and/or distress towards a police officer. He was sentenced to two weeks’ imprisonment, which the court announced had been uplifted from a community order due to the homophobic nature of the offending.
The Defendant was charged with shop theft and assaulting the arresting officer. He was also charged with homophobic intentional harassment alarm and/or distress towards a second officer. He was sentenced to 16 weeks’ imprisonment suspended for 12 months and ordered to pay compensation towards the second officer as an uplift in sentence to reflect the homophobic aggravation.
The Defendant was convicted of assaulting a police officer whilst uttering homophobic abuse. He was also convicted of an assault on a neighbour which was accompanied by disablist abuse and a further offence of racially aggravated intentional harassment alarm and/or distress for a racist tirade in the street. He was sentenced to seven months’ imprisonment which the court announced had been uplifted to reflect the aggravated offending.
The Defendant was charged with racially aggravated assault when he struck the victim whilst using racist language towards him. Following his arrest the defendant continued with a tirade of racist abuse whilst in the police station, for which he was charged with causing racial harassment alarm and/or distress. Upon conviction for these offences he was fined. The court announced they had uplifted sentence from a band A to a band B fine to reflect the racial aggravation.