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CPS Yorkshire and Humberside: Hate crime sentence uplift examples, cases finalised June 2022

|News, Hate crime

Under the hate crime legislation, courts must treat offences more seriously where there is evidence that the offender demonstrated hostility on the basis of the victim’s actual or presumed race, religion, disability, transgender identity or sexual orientation, or the offence was motivated on the basis of hostility towards one of these characteristics. Below are some examples of hate crime cases prosecuted by CPS Yorkshire and Humberside in June 2022 which resulted in a conviction and an uplifted sentence.

Racially Aggravated Hate Crime Cases:

1.    The defendant was arrested by the victim following an assault on a member of the public. After being put into the police van the defendant started to act racially hostile towards the victim. The behaviour of the defendant continued into the custody suite. The defendant demonstrated hostility towards the victim on the basis of their ethnicity and repeatedly made direct reference to it amidst her derogatory comments. The comments made were persistent and were viewed as part of a continuing offence. The defendant pleaded guilty at the first hearing and was sentenced to 10 months imprisonment. This was uplifted for racial aggravation by 7 months. (Humberside)

2.    The defendant made a 999 call stating he had been assaulted. On the call the defendant sounded very irate and was using racist language repeatedly. The victim also made a 999 call reporting that he was being racially abused by the defendant. When the police arrived at the scene, the defendant was captured on bodyworn footage hurling racial abuse towards the victim. The police arrested the defendant for his abusive behaviour. The defendant was charged with six offences. He pleaded guilty to three of the most serious offences which included the racially aggravated offences. He was sentenced to 36 months imprisonment. This was uplifted for racial aggravation by 28 months. (North Yorkshire)

3.    The defendant’s daughters worked for the victim and were made redundant during lockdown. The defendant and his wife arrived at the victim’s store to deliver a letter. An argument between both parties occurred with the defendant racially abusing the victim and making threats to kill. During the incident, the defendant also assaults the victim’s daughter by deliberately spitting at her. The defendant pleaded not guilty at the first hearing. Later at the trial hearing, the magistrates’ found the defendant guilty of all charges. He was sentenced to 26 weeks imprisonment suspended for 18 months. Due to the racial aggravation the sentence was uplifted by 4 weeks. (South Yorkshire)

4.    The victim works at a property for homeless adults and the defendant resided there. He asked to use the victim’s office to make a phone call. Whilst the defendant was on the phone, he made some derogatory comments referring to the victim. The victim stopped the call, the defendant left the office and whilst in the corridor he began to racially abuse the victim making them feel threatened. The defendant left the premises and damaged the victim’s vehicle. The defendant pleaded not guilty at the first hearing. Later at the trial hearing, he was found guilty of all charges by the magistrates. He was sentenced to a community order for 12 months and 20 RAR days. RARs form part of a Community Order or Suspended Sentence Order to set the amount and type of rehabilitation activity for people on probation. As the incident was racially motivated, the sentence was uplifted by an additional 5 RAR days. (West Yorkshire)

5.    The victim was on duty and responded to a call whereby a female and male were abusing staff at a public house. The victim had to arrest the female defendant for separate offences. Following the arrest of the female, the male defendant began to racially abuse the victim as well as other derogatory comments. At the first hearing, the male defendant pleaded guilty. He was ordered by the court to pay a fine of £210 with an uplift of £60. (South Yorkshire)

6.    The victims work together in a shop. The defendant enters the shop and accuses the victims of selling him fake goods. The victims offer the defendant a refund but he refuses. The defendant then becomes abusive towards the victims using racist language. The defendant leaves the store but later returns with a metal pole threatening the victims. The victims described feeling very frightened by the incident, the language used and the aggressive behaviour of the defendant. Police officers attend the defendant’s home address and he is arrested. At the first hearing, the defendant pleads guilty to the offences against him. The defendant is sentenced to a 12 month community order, he must pay each of the victims £250 in compensation and must complete 150 hours of upaid work, uplifted from 100 hours. (West Yorkshire)

Homophobic Hate Crime Cases:

1.    The victim has contacted the police detailing an incident whereby the defendant continually flashed his car headlights at the victim’s property for a period of time. The victim further reported that the defendant began making threats and using offensive language relating to the victim’s sexuality. At the first hearing, the defendant pleaded guilty to the offences against him. He received a conditional discharge which was uplifted to a £200 fine. He was also ordered to pay court costs, compensation to the victim and a restraining order was put in place to offer further protection for the victim. (South Yorkshire)

2.    The defendant was in a public house, she was heavily intoxicated and began shouting whilst stood on a bench. She was asked to get down by the licensee and responded with a homophobic remark. The defendant was then asked to leave the premises but became even more abusive and violent towards staff making attempts to head-butt and punch them. Staff managed to remove the defendant from the premises and locked the door preventing further entry. The defendant continued to make homophobic comments and proceeded to get into the driver’s side of a vehicle, luckily not colliding with anyone or anything. On arrival of the police, the defendant was arrested for numerous offences. The defendant pleaded guilty to all charges at the first hearing receiving a 12 month community order plus 20 RAR days including attending an abstinence alcohol programme for 120 days uplifted from 90 days. She is also disqualified from driving for 3 years and must pay compensation to the victims. (Humberside)

Click here for more information on how the CPS prosecutes hate crimes.

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