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A vandal who painted offensive graffiti on a random pub and house ‘has no idea’ why he did so.

Kieron Wright, 23, used black paint to daub slogans onto the wall of a house in Hylton Road, and the nearby Railway Tavern pub, Sunderland magistrates heard.

The court was told the properties were randomly selected, and had nothing to do with what was written on them.

Prosecutor Lee Poppett said: “This case concerns three offences of graffiti, for want of a better term.”

Mr Poppett said a rented property was defaced twice, on July 3, and July 7.

And on July 4, he repeated the offence on an outside wall of the Railway Tavern.

Mr Poppett added: “There is no suggestion that either of the premises were targeted in any way, or racially motivated in any way.

“Mr Wright has taken it upon himself to write on them in black paint.”

He was identified from CCTV footage and when police searched his house, they found a small amount of cannabis bush.

Wright, of Rosedale Street, Sunderland, admitted three counts of criminal damage, possession of cannabis, and breaching two conditional discharges.

He has 33 previous convictions for a total of 47 offences, five of which were criminal damage.

Tony Southwick, defending, said: “The second incident on July 7, he painted over what he had previously painted. He added a little bit extra.

“This was not targeted in any way. It’s not racially aggravated because he would not have known who the landlord was.

“He has no explanation as to why he has done this.

“He accepts that the small quantity of cannabis in the house was for his own personal use. He tells me it’s barely enough to make one joint.

“He was laid off from work in May and he uses cannabis more or less on a daily basis because he is bored.”

Wright was sentenced to a six-month community order with 10 days’ specified activity.

He was told to pay a £50 fine, and £110 in compensation.

Sunderland Echo

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Geoffrey Farquharson sent a racist and homophobic voice message to Ben Bradshaw the day before Jo Cox MP was killed

Geoffrey Farquharson, 37, leaves Exeter magistrates court after receiving a 12-week prison sentence, suspended for two years. Photograph: Rod Minchin/PA

Geoffrey Farquharson, 37, leaves Exeter magistrates court after receiving a 12-week prison sentence, suspended for two years. Photograph: Rod Minchin/PA

A man who sent a threatening voice message to senior Labour MP Ben Bradshaw the day before the killing of parliamentary colleague Jo Cox has been given a suspended sentence.

In the two-minute message Geoffrey Farquharson, 37, shouts down the phone, swears repeatedly and makes threats towards the former culture secretary. The racist and homophobic message, which was left on the answerphone of Bradshaw’s parliamentary office, was sent the day before Labour MP Cox was killed in June this year.

The message made Bradshaw fearful for the safety of his staff, Exeter magistrates court heard. District Judge Stephen Nichols sentenced Farquharson to 12 weeks’ imprisonment, suspended for two years.

He was also given a 25-day community order, banned indefinitely from contacting Bradshaw or attending his constituency office, and ordered to pay £85 prosecution costs.

The judge told him: “The message was clearly homophobic, Islamophobic and racist and there was clearly a death threat to Mr Bradshaw.

“You accept through your guilty plea that the message you sent to Mr Bradshaw was highly offensive. In the message, your voice became extremely angry and you make threats and use highly offensive and abusive language.”

In the message, which was played to the court, Farquharson starts by giving his full name and address and says he has just watched a video on Facebook about Muslim extremism.

Farquharson then launches a homophobic tirade against Bradshaw, who is gay, and repeatedly goads the MP to call the police. The defendant uses highly offensive language throughout, and describes Bradshaw as “evil”.

The call was picked up by a member of the MP’s staff, who raised the alarm. After Bradshaw reported the matter to the police, Farquharson was arrested the following day.

The court heard that the MP had made a victim impact statement, in which he said: “Having had death threats before I was not unduly concerned about myself and more concerned about my staff, particularly in Exeter, who have borne the brunt of Mr Farquharson.”

He went on to say that public servants should not have to put up with threats and abuse from members of the public and that his concerns had been heightened because of the killing of Cox.

At a previous hearing, Farquharson, of Exeter, had pleaded guilty to sending an indecent or grossly offensive message. Farquharson, who suffers from mental health issues, was accompanied by his carer when he returned to court to be sentenced.

The judge heard that Farquharson had autism and a difficult upbringing. Rob Jacobs, defending, said Farquharson’s “anger and annoyance” had been building up at what he saw as “concerns for others” and he had “lost his temper”.

Jacobs said: “Mr Farquharson is both very vulnerable and probably a very lonely individual. I don’t think he would mind me saying that that he has too much time to think and ruminate on his political views. It is true that his political views are strongly held.

“He would say that he does not hold homophobic or racist views himself and the words he used were a manifestation of his anger and frustration, rather than him holding any anti-social views.”

Last week, Bradshaw said the abuse dished out to politicians on social media had got worse since the death of Cox. He told the BBC’s Victoria Derbyshire show he believed it was now “socially acceptable” to use Facebook and Twitter to abuse politicians and he hoped the killing would lead to a “deeper reflection” about the political culture in the UK.

The Guardian

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An impatient man made racist remarks and gave a Nazi salute while he was at Blackpool police headquarters.

Darren Dale was annoyed because he thought the wait to see whether police would recommend he got a peddlars licence was too long,

Dale, , 37, of Reads Avenue, Blackpool, pleaded guilty to racially aggravated threatening behaviour.

He was sentenced to a 12 months community order with up to 20 days rehabilitation to be supervised by the probation service, put on an eight weeks curfew and ordered to pay £85 costs with £85 victims’ surcharge by Blackpool magistrates.

Prosecutor, Martine Connah, said Dale went into Blackpool police station to ask about a peddlars certificate on July 15. An inquiry assistant told him an inspector was considering the matter. He replied the country was done for and kept making racist remarks under his breath.

The assistant said his remarks were inappropriate considering the recent events in France. Dale gave a Nazi salute and said: “I’m going to change my religion and kill people.”
Peter Cave, defending, told the court Dale had been waiting for six weeks for his peddlars license and became distressed.

Blackpool Gazette

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A man who made more than 100 nuisance calls to Sussex Police has been convicted.

David Peapell, of Dyke Road in Brighton, made a total of 108 calls to the 101 non-emergency number and sent 56 text messages to an officer between 30 July and 2 September.

This was despite him being issued with a warning letter about his unnecessary number of calls in October 2014.

The 48-year-old, who is unemployed, pleaded guilty to persistently making use of a public electronic communications network for the purpose of causing annoyance, inconvenience or needless anxiety to employees of Sussex Police when he appeared at Brighton Magistrates’ Court on Thursday (3 December).

Contact centre investigator Sarah-Louise Gliddon said: “Mr Peapell has been a persistent caller for a number of years and was given a warning by the local policing team in October 2014 to only make contact with police to report a new incident or an emergency which required police response.

“He ignored the warning and continued to make excessive calls to police on the 101 non-emergency number, and excessively text the police officer who had dealt with him.

“The volume and the frequency of Peapell’s calls impacted the contact centre’s ability to provide a service to the public, who genuinely needed police assistance or attendance whilst he was calling.

“We now actively peruse persistent callers, issuing them with warnings about how their unnecessary contact affects our ability to service other members of the public trying to report police incidents on the 101 number and 999 emergency lines.

“People who contact us persistently will be dealt within the context of an offence of wasting police time and face court if they continue to make unnecessary contact stopping us dealing with the public that do need our assistance.”

Peapell was sentenced to a 12-month community order. He was also fined £40, and ordered to pay a £60 victim surcharge, £50 in costs and a £150 criminal court charge.

Juice Brighton

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But Cleveland Police questioned in court over claims Mark Trippett was only stopped because he had a far-right group’s shirt on

Mark Trippett, 35, of Carisbrooke Avenue, Middlesbrough, stopped by police and found carrying a knuckleduster

Mark Trippett, 35, of Carisbrooke Avenue, Middlesbrough, stopped by police and found carrying a knuckleduster

A man wearing a T-shirt seemingly proclaiming him to be a far-right group’s “soldier” was nicked after police caught him with a £1.50 knuckleduster.

Officers stopped Middlesbrough’s Mark Trippett while he was wearing a “right wing” North East Infidels shirt.

However, Trippett – who has EDL tattooed on his neck – insist he doesn’t share their views.

And he’s been spared prison for carrying the knuckleduster after a judge heard there was “no reason” to stop him, other than for his shirt.

Police used stop and search powers as Trippett walked along Corporation Road in Middlesbrough on July 16.

Teesside Magistrates’ Court heard on Wednesday that he had forgotten it was there.

“He said he didn’t intend on using it and it was a daft mistake,” added the probation service.

He handed the knuckleduster straight to police, with his solicitor adding it had been a “serene” incident.

“There were no threats to police and he handed the weapon straight over,” he said.

“Perhaps it was a macho thing at the time, and it wasn’t thought through.”

Trippett, 35, of Carisbrooke Avenue, Thorntree, had been wearing the North East Infidels shirt – emblazoned with the word “soldier” – when he was arrested.

The group marched alongside EDL and National Front members in Stockton last year.

The Teesside branch claim on Facebook the group is a “family”, but in court they were dubbed “right wing”.

However, Judge Martin Walker questioned if Cleveland Police had simply targeted him because of his shirt, with the court hearing there had been “no disorder” in the area to warrant stop and search laws being deployed.

Tracksuit-clad Trippett had pleaded guilty to possessing an offensive weapon, which he claimed he’d bought for £1.50.

Judge Walker warned the offence would almost always carry a jail term.

But he instead handed him a one-year community order, but not without dishing out a dressing down.

“Certainly (the knuckleduster) is only used to cause serious harm to another human being,” added Judge Walker.

“That is what the knuckleduster is for – to enhance the power of the fist.”

Cleveland Police declined to comment. The weapon will be destroyed.

Gazette Live

Mark Pearson with his 18-year-old daughter Tina

Mark Pearson with his 18-year-old daughter Tina

HE was once jailed after holding his daughter captive – but 15 years on he’s back in trouble with the law, this time for protecting her honour.

Mark Pearson was locked up for eight years in 1996 after he sparked a two-hour armed siege, which left a police officer fighting for his life.

Armed with a commando knife, Pearson, then 21, stabbed PC Peter Walsh in the thigh, severing a main vein, then returned to his house and kept his partner and three-year-old daughter captive while armed police surrounded his property.

The horrifying ordeal only ended after police negotiators and his mother pleaded with him to give himself up.

But after pledging to turn his life around while in prison, Pearson has been hauled before the court once again – this time for assaulting a teenager who bad-mouthed his daughter, now 18, to his face.

The court heard Tina’s 18-year-old ex Robert Cummings told Pearson he would spread lies about his daughter around the village where they live. Pearson, 36, then pushed Mr Cummings to the ground and punched him in the face.

Speaking from his home in Pelton, County Durham, Pearson said: “Obviously, the biggest regret of my life was that incident where Tina was involved as a child.

“As her dad, I see it as my job to protect her, and that’s what I did when this kid insulted her like he did.”

Pearson, who lives with his partner and five children in The Avenue, admitted assault before Consett magistrates yesterday.

He also admitted possessing three air rifles which were found by police when they raided his home following the attack.

The court heard Pearson spotted Tina and Mr Cummings outside a supermarket cuddling in June.

He approached the pair and told Tina to return home.

Heather Wilkinson, prosecuting, said: “He told her to go home and for Robert Cummings to wait outside the property.

“Shouting could be heard from inside the property. Mr Cummings left and walked to a bus stop when a neighbour approached him.

“Pearson then came out and tried to start an argument.

“Mr Cummings said ‘I felt he wanted to have a fight’. He (Pearson) said: ‘Come home get a shovel and you can dig yourself a hole’.”

It was said that Pearson then pushed the teenager towards the ground over a bench and, as he turned to board a bus, hit him in the face.

But Susan Hanson, defending, said that while Pearson admitted causing the injuries, he did not accept many of the details of what happened.

He was sentenced to a 12-month community order with supervision and ordered to attend a calm course.

He was also ordered to pay compensation to Mr Cummings of £100.

Newcastle Chronicle

A MAN has been slapped with a community order after attacking a police officer.

Derek Hemphill, 44, pushed Pc Richard Needham with such force that he banged his head on a chest of drawers during a struggle.

Kirklees magistrates ordered him to pay compensation to the officer, who was left with red marks to his head and a cut jaw.

The Huddersfield court was told that on December 15, the officer was called out to deal with an incident at the house on Forest Road, Almondbury.

He arrived to find a woman in the living room who was upset and comforting her son.

Pc Needham was directed upstairs. There he found two officers with Hemphill.

Alex Bosman, prosecuting, said Hemphill was aggressive, pacing and clenching his fists.

“Hemphill went at him, his hands flailing in the air. He took hold of him round his head and there was a further struggle.

“The officer tried to break free from the hold and he was pushed back with full force.

“He fell backwards and banged his head on a chest of drawers, with Hemphill landing on top of him.”

Magistrates were told that one of the officer’s colleagues used CS gas on Hemphill and he was restrained with their help.

The bench was told that Hemphill, of Highfield Crescent in Meltham, was found guilty of the attack following a trial last month.

Magistrates gave Hemphill a community order for two years, including a domestic violence programme.

They also ordered him to pay £100 compensation to Pc Needham and £500 prosecution costs.

Huddersfield Daily Examiner

Hemphill was jailed for Violent Disorder after and EDL demo. More info here