35-year-old Mark Cunningham of Thornton Street was sentenced after being charged with Racially/religiously aggravated fear/provocation of violence by words/writing following the incident at Shell Garage on Linacre Lane. He will also pay compensation to the victim.
At around 7pm, Cunningham entered the location and tried to exchange goods which had been tampered with. This was denied by the store assistant, who was then subjected to Cunningham approaching the counter, attempting to assault the victim, and shouting racist abuse. The victim was left in fear of violence and retreated into a locked staff area until police arrived and arrested Cunningham.
Speaking after the sentencing, Detective Constable Linda Duignan said: “We share the victim’s satisfaction that Cunningham has been jailed for this disgusting incident, in which a member of staff going about their business was racially abused, and threatened with violence, fearing for his safety at a place of work.
“Cunningham has been dealt with swiftly and will now hopefully reflect on his actions. We take all reports of hate crime extremely seriously and I would like to take this opportunity to reassure people that we have specially trained officers who investigate cases with a view to robust action being taken against offenders.
“This was a vicious attack in a public place, and the victim did exactly the right thing by calling the police immediately. Y