Peter Griffen who made racist comments claimed he was ‘peacemaker’ at rowdy protest

A RACIST yob who said “n*****s should be shot” claimed he was a “peacemaker” at a rowdy protest.

Peter Griffen was held by police during the large demo in Glasgow’s George Square on June 14 this year.

Activists from the Glasgow Youth Art Collective had planned to gather there demanding the removal of the statue of former Prime Minister Sir Robert Peel.

This was in the midst of the Black Lives Matter movement.

Hundreds of counter protestors then turned up to apparently protect statues from graffiti and damage.

Prosecutor Christopher McKnight told Glasgow Sheriff Court there was a “strong police presence” at George Square.

Griffen was part of a group described as becoming “aggressive” that day.

The 42-year-old was given the chance to leave the area, but ended up being arrested.

He initially threatened one officer also branding him a “c***”.

Griffen was hauled to a police station in the city where he was heard making racist jibes.

He stated: “They should do what they do in America and shoot the n*****s.”

Griffen also branded a police worker a “fenian dog” and made a remark about loyalist group the Ulster Freedom Fighters.

Marisa Borland, defending, told the hearing: “Mr Griffen, in his own view, had been acting as a peacekeeper that day.

“He had earlier separated a number of situations which could have caused significant disturbance.

“This also included clearing glass bottles from the area.”

The court heard Griffen kicked off at police when they wrongly thought he was banned from Glasgow city centre.

Miss Borland added: “He felt he was being treated unfairly.”

Griffen, of the city’s Shettleston, pleaded guilty to behaving in a threatening and abusive manner which was racially aggravated.

Sheriff Jonathan Guy said the crime merited jail and noted in a pre-sentencing report Griffen moaned he had been the “victim of police harassment”.

But, he concluded “somewhat reluctantly” he been persuaded against locking Griffen up.

The yob will instead carry out 270 hours of unpaid work and will be tagged for 81 days keeping him indoors between 9pm and 7am each day.

Glasgow Evening Times

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