SIX thugs followed a man from a train and attacked him “like a pack of dogs” in a racially motivated, drink-fuelled attack, a court heard.
The victim was punched, kicked and hit over the head with weapons as the men hurled vile racist abuse at him.
Police seized mobile phones from three of the defendants after the incident and found text messages boasting about the attack.
Leeds Crown Court heard the victim was falsely accused of stealing £120 from one of the men after he boarded a train from Leeds to Sheffield on September 27 last year.
Christopher Smith, prosecuting, said the victim got off the train at Castleford station but was followed by the men who continued to challenge him. The victim was then chased and shouted to staff at a nearby Aldi store: “Help. They are going to kill me.”
Mr Smith said the victim was thrown to the floor and kicked and punched. He was also struck over the head with a bottle and attacked with a heavy traffic cone as he lay on the ground. Demands for money continued to be made during the attack. Witnesses described how members of the group referred to the victim as a ‘black b******’ and a ‘monkey’ during the attack. Three of the men were stopped by police nearby after the attack. Their phones were seized and examined.
A phone belonging to one of the defendant’s, Matthew Beck, contained a message which read: “Kicked f** out of a n****”. All six men pleaded guilty to racially aggravated assault occasioning actual bodily harm.
Recorder Nicholas Barker told them: “It was as if you were a pack of dogs - kicking him, punching him, hitting him with a bottle and a traffic cone. He must have no doubt wondered where this ordeal was going to end. He thought you were indeed going to kill him”.
All six defendants were given 21 month jail terms, suspended for two years. They were all ordered to do 250 hours of unpaid work and made the subject of a five-month curfew order. They were also told they must each pay £800 compensation to the victim plus a fine of £1,500. Those sentenced were: Matthew Beck, 25, of Haigh Park Garden, South Kirkby; Joshua Cook, 21, of Springvale Rise, Hemsworth; Luke Cartwright, 22, of Grove Lane, Hemsworth; Reece Jones, 22, of Stockingate, South Kirkby; David Lane, 51, of Dodworth Central Club, Barnsley; and Aaron Woodall, 23, of Barnsley Road, Hemsworth.