Men sentenced over racist violence after Dewsbury EDL demo

A judge has locked up six men who became involved in “unprovoked racist violence” after they left a demonstration by the English Defence League.

Sentencing them at Leeds Crown Court today, Judge Scott Wolstenholme said the original demonstration in Cleckheaton although “rowdy and offensive” on March 17 last year had been controlled by police without criminal offences.

But those before the court had then caught a bus to Heckmondwike where several targeted a man of Asian appearance following him to the Co-operative Travel premises where he took refuge.

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Some had scarves over their faces and as they banged on the windows were shouting “kill him” and “come out here”, forcing staff to lock the door to protect customers inside.

The judge said they included women and children who were terrified as the glass was cracked in one window before the group eventually left and went to Dewsbury.

There an Asian man was punched in the face, two women in traditional Muslim dress were insulted and the group continued their “loutish behaviour”, drinking outside the Principal public house where two Asian men in a car nearby were abused before Steven Woodhead spat in the passenger’s face and Kevin Docherty threw his drink as the car moved away breaking the rear wiper.

The men, from Bradford, also subsequently chased another Asian man who was kicked and punched to the ground suffering cuts and bruises.

Docherty, 39 of Grisedale Close, Great Horton, was jailed for 14 months for violent disorder and racially aggravated damage; David Lawler, 30 of Central Avenue, Shipley, was jailed for 13 months, Mark Peel, 34 of Bolton Hall Road, was jailed for 12 months and Ben Phelps, 19, of Meadway, was sent to a young offender institution for 10 months for violent disorder; Robert Collington, 27 of Bedivere Road, received 12 months for violent disorder and causing racially aggravated fear; Woodhead, 33 of Heysham Drive, was jailed for four months for racially aggravated common assault and Bradley Allsop, 17 of Erskine Parade, was given a 12 months youth rehabilitation order with 120 hours unpaid work for violent disorder.