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A dad hurled racist abuse at his child’s school teacher after they were injured in a playground accident, before returning to the school the next day armed with an axe, a court heard.

Stephen Cosgrove, 36, targeted the teacher, who is black, verbally attacking him with racist and homopohobic slurs after his child’s arm was broken.

The next day, on February 8, he turned up at the gates of Brownhills School in Walsall, West Midlands and continued his rant towards teachers while holding the terrifying weapon.

Stephen Cosgrove has been jailed for a year for racially abusing his child’s black teacher at school and turning up at the gates with an axe

Stephen Cosgrove has been jailed for a year for racially abusing his child’s black teacher at school and turning up at the gates with an axe

Unemployed Cosgrove, of Walsall, has been jailed for a year and handed a restraining order for the public order offences.

He has been ordered not to contact any employee of Brownhills School and not to go within 100 yards of the building.

n a victim impact statement, the teacher, who has not been named, said: ‘I am a black teacher and this is my fifth year in my teaching career.

‘I have never experienced extreme racial abuse, violent threatening behaviour and intimidating far right views from parents at school, as demonstrated by Cosgrove.

‘The constant thought of his threatening acts of violence has caused me to avoid going out publicly due to the overwhelming fear of being injured or assaulted, which has left me feeling vulnerable.’

PC Paul Watts, from West Midlands Police, said after the case: ‘Both the aggressive incidents were witnessed by students at the school, who heard the swearing and racist language.

‘What Cosgrove did was unacceptable and created fear for not only pupils, but the teachers who had to face him.

‘I am glad we have brought this man to justice and hope it can serve as an example that we will not tolerate this type of abuse in our community.’

Metro

Restaurant owner William Eve denies abuse was religiously aggravated

A Tommy Robinson supporter has admitted verbally abusing a journalist at a protest and accusing her of being “Muslim-backed”.

William Eve, a restaurant owner from north-east London, was caught on camera insulting a female reporter and demanding to know whether she was “with or against” the English Defence League (EDL) founder.

Westminster Magistrates’ Court heard the 57-year-old shouted at Al Jazeera’s Sonia Gallego during a “Free Tommy” protest that merged with a pro-Donald Trump rally in July.

Prosecutor Robert Simpson said: “The complainant is someone who is a reporter for Al Jazeera. She was conducting interviews and recording them.

“She was approached by the defendant, asked who she was, he found out and made the comment ‘so you’re Muslim-backed’. He went on to say she was stupid and call her a slag.”

Eve was filmed demanding to know who Ms Gallego worked for and asking: “Are you with Tommy Robinson or against him?”

The journalist said she was not taking any sides in her reporting but Eve accused her of being “Muslim-backed” and called her “f***ing stupid” when she asked what he meant.

Mr Simpson said he also “jabbed a finger towards” Ms Gallego, who recorded the incident in central London.

Eve, of Adnams walk in Rainham, admitted one count of using threatening, abusive or insulting words or behaviour to cause harassment, alarm or distress on 14 July.

But he pleaded not guilty to a second count alleging that the harassment was religiously aggravated and is due to go on trial next month.

Deputy district judge Jim Astle released Eve on bail until his trial at City of London Magistrates’ Court on 21 February.

Eve made no comment as he left the court, with a hat pulled over his face.

Police said Robinson supporters at the rally physically attacked officers and hurled racial abuse, while a group also blocked a bus driven by a Muslim woman wearing a headscarf.

Ukip leader Gerard Batten, who has since hired Robinson as an adviser, and anti-Islam politicians from the US, Sweden and Belgium spoke at the event.

It was one of several protests held over the imprisonment of Robinson, who was jailed for allegedly committing contempt of court at a grooming gang trial in May.

The anti-Islam activist, real name Stephen Yaxley-Lennon, was released in April after the Court of Appeal overturned the findings because of procedural failings.

Judges ordered a rehearing and the case has been referred to the attorney general for consideration on how it will proceed.

The Independent

A Barnsley killer who has spent the first night of a life sentence behind bars has shown no remorse for his actions, detectives have revealed.

Ricky Ramsden, aged 27 and formerly of Dodworth Road, was jailed for life yesterday after being found guilty of the murder of 39-year-old Dawid Szubert in Barnsley town centre in June.

He was ordered to serve a minimum of 17 years behind bars for killing Mr Szubert in broad daylight as he lay unconscious near the Civic Gardens after taking the drug Spice.

Ramsden stamped on his victim’s head, triggering a cardiac arrest and Mr Szubert was pronounced dead at the scene.

South Yorkshire Police said the killer had ‘taken exception’ to Mr Szubert having taken Spice and had shown no remorse for the murder.

Detective Chief Inspector Steve Whittaker said: “The brutality and callousness shown by Ramsden is as shocking as it is appalling and throughout our inquiry, he has shown no remorse for his actions and has continued to deny his involvement in Mr Szubert’s death.

“The court heard that on that day Mr Szubert, a Polish national who had lived in Barnsley for approximately two years, had taken the drug spice and was laid unconscious.

“Ramsden took exception to this, walked over to Mr Szubert and stamped on his head, stating that he was sick of seeing spice heads.”

Sheffield Star

Kevin Crehan arrived just as a corrupt prison officer was busted

Kevin Crehan died at HMP Bristol in Horfield

Kevin Crehan died at HMP Bristol in Horfield

HMP Bristol was awash with illegal drugs and phones when an inmate who died of an overdose was first transferred there – because a corrupt prison officer had been smuggling them in, an inquest has heard.

The scale of the drugs problem at the Horfield prison was laid bare at the inquest into the death of Kevin Crehan – by the very person in charge of security at the jail.

Crehan, 35, died in late December 2016, just weeks after being transferred to the Horfield jail.

The first day of a two-week inquest into his death heard he died of a drugs overdose thanks to a cocktail of five prescription drugs, particularly methadone and diazepam.

An inquest jury heard he had been ‘doing well’ in his efforts to get off drugs during the first months of his sentence, served at Guy’s Marsh Prison in Dorset.

The inquest was told he was transferred to Bristol Prison on the last day of November 2016.

Giving evidence to his inquest was Joanne Hadden, the head of security at HMP Bristol, and she was cross-examined by Mikhael Puar, representing the Crehan family.

He asked her exactly how illegal or illicit drugs found their way into the prison.

She described numerous various ways in which drugs enter the cells, and said that at the end of November 2016, just days before Crehan arrived, a prison officer had been discovered smuggling around £20,000 worth of drugs and phones into the prison to sell to inmates.

That prison officer was subsequently sent to prison themselves, for two and a half years.

It meant that, at around the time Crehan arrived, prisoners had little trouble getting their hands on illegal drugs.

Ms Hadden said that this corrupt route had meant an end to the long-standing practice of friends and family throwing illegal drugs over the walls of the prison, a strategy that had returned in the months after that corrupt officer’s supply route was busted.

But she said that there had been other suspicious officers or staff at the prison. She spoke of other people whose work brings them into the prison, about whom there had been intelligence or suspicion.

“There have been members of staff who don’t work within the prison staff themselves who, while they haven’t been arrested, have left or stopped working there and there’s intelligence that there’s a route that has ended,” she explained.

Mr Puar asked if there was a particular problem at Bristol Prison of staff ‘turning a blind eye’ to prisoners accessing or taking drugs.

“You would like to think not but I’m not naive,” said Ms Hadden. “It’s not large scale though.”

It wasn’t just corrupt staff or civilians who brought drugs in.

“Prisoners can be paid thousands of pounds to return very quickly when they are released on licence, so that they can keep the drugs coming in on the inside,” she said.

“They will be released on licence but then make sure they do something which will mean they are arrested and returned to prison, but will have drugs hidden on them.

“Other routes into the prison are from people throwing them over the wall. In those packages will will be phones and drugs,” she added.

Ms Hadden said that visitors to the prison will bring drugs and phones in, and they have increasingly found that drugs like spice will be secreted within paper sent as letters.

“We found this was happening so acted to stop it. Now instead they will send drugs in legal letters to prisoners, which we are not allowed to open, so we have to check with the individual solicitors’ office to check they actually did send this letter or not

“We’ll close down a route and a new route will open up. It’s a continuing problem we have to face.”

The problem of the tide of drugs entering HMP Horfield has been well-documented before, but has been put into the spotlight with the inquest into the death of Kevin Crehan, which began on Monday.

Toxicology tests revealed Crehan had five prescription drugs in his system: Methadone, diazepam, mirtazapin, gavepentin and pregabalin.

Only one of those – methadone – he was actually prescribed, and even then, both the toxicologist and the Home Office pathologist told the inquest it was likely, on the balance of probabilities, the amount of methadone in his system indicated he’d taken extra on top of the 60mg a day he had been prescribed.

The inquest continues.
Bristol Post

 Gerard Batten, in the white shirt and blue tie, sitting to the left of Tommy Robinson, with Daniel Thomas to his right, at the Ukip demo planning meeting Credit: Gerard Batten/Twitter

Gerard Batten, in the white shirt and blue tie, sitting to the left of Tommy Robinson, with Daniel Thomas to his right, at the Ukip demo planning meeting Credit: Gerard Batten/Twitter


A far right activist who claims to be one of the organisers of a Ukip rally and who attended a top level meeting with the party’s leader Gerard Batten has a conviction for attempted kidnap, The Sunday Telegraph can reveal.

Daniel Thomas, 29, has been instrumental in promoting “The Brexit Betrayal” march, a London demonstration in which the newly appointed Ukip advisor ‘Tommy Robinson’ is expected to speak on December 9.

In a picture tweeted by Gerard Batten on Friday, Thomas is photographed sat next to Robinson, the founder of the English Defence League, alongside the party leader.

Mr Batten tweeted: “Spent the afternoon planning Brexit Betrayal – Brexit Must Mean Exit March & Rally,” adding that the event was a “leaver family day out”.

It can be revealed Thomas, a father of four, was jailed two years ago for the attempted armed kidnapping of a man in Hampshire.

Daniel Thomas, also known as Danny Tommo, with Tommy Robinson, whose real name is Stephen Yaxley-Lennon, at a demonstration Credit: Daniel Thomas/Facebook

Daniel Thomas, also known as Danny Tommo, with Tommy Robinson, whose real name is Stephen Yaxley-Lennon, at a demonstration Credit: Daniel Thomas/Facebook

Last night, Ukip insisted Thomas was there purely as a Robinson’s bodyguard, despite the photograph showing him sat at the conference table with note paper and having a proven record in organising political rallies.

The revelations could prove to be politically damaging because Ukip’s National Executive Committee is under pressure from former leader Nigel Farage to hold a vote of no confidence in Mr Batten’s leadership when it meets in London.

Last week, Mr Farage wrote a letter to the 15-strong NEC urging it to pass a vote of no confidence in Mr Batten’s leadership over the way he had courted Robinson and pursued an anti-Muslim agenda.

Mr Farage told the Sunday Telegraph: “I am absolutely disgusted with the whole thing. I have been warning repeatedly for the past few months that this was a disastrous course of action. And we are now pretty much at the end game.”

Mr Batten insisted he “was not aware” of Thomas’s conviction and asked to be sent details.

A police mugshot of Daniel Thomas after his arrest for attempted kidnapping

A police mugshot of Daniel Thomas after his arrest for attempted kidnapping

In July 2016, a judge condemned Thomas and two other men for an “extraordinarily frightening incident” matched only by its “stupidity” in which they armed themselves with knives and targeted Graham Page at his home on Hayling Island.

Mr Page told Portsmouth Crown Court that Thomas, along with Darren Anscombe, 38, and Leo Smith, 34, burst into the house shouting “you’re coming with us”.

He claimed they wrongly accused him of stealing £10,000 of drugs from them and tried to drag him away.

Mr Page resisted and the men fled, shouting “we’ll be back”. Upon arrest Thomas, from Hampshire, admitted the offence. He was jailed for two years. The two others received 30 month sentences.

Danny Tommo takes a selfie at one of the far right demonstrations he organised

Danny Tommo takes a selfie at one of the far right demonstrations he organised

After his release from prison last year, Thomas adopted the pseudonym Danny Tommo and organised marches throughout the country calling for Tommy Robinson, whose real name is Stephen Yaxley-Lennon, to be freed from a sentence for contempt of court.

Thomas became an expert at dealing with local authorities and police to set up protests, where he also gave speeches. He is now among the inner circle of Robinson’s associates and this year organised two rallies outside the Old Bailey when Robinson was appearing there.

Last week, he posted a video to his thousands of followers on Facebook promoting the Ukip march as “the beginning of the political revolution”, adding “we are going to be working together”.

He regularly visits London’s Speakers’ Corner where he films himself arguing with Muslims, and was once handcuffed and detained by police before being released.

Daniel Thomas is led away by police from Speakers' Corner, Hyde Park, London

Daniel Thomas is led away by police from Speakers’ Corner, Hyde Park, London

On Saturday night, Thomas said the attempted kidnapping was committed because he “got involved with some stupid people” after experiencing financial difficulty.

“Everyone deserves a second chance,” he said. “I came out of prison and I have turned my life around.

“I now go to church every Sunday and pray for forgiveness. Hopefully I will better myself over the years and this incident will be forgotten.”

He was privately educated and has worked as a bricklayer, sales and marketing manager and run a web design company. However, he has now stopped working to “dedicate everything to the cause.”

 Daniel Thomas speaks at the demonstration he organised outside the Old Bailey while Tommy Robinson appears at a hearing Credit: Rmv/Zuma Press / eyevine

Daniel Thomas speaks at the demonstration he organised outside the Old Bailey while Tommy Robinson appears at a hearing Credit: Rmv/Zuma Press / eyevine

Thomas, a former tank driver with the King’s Royal Hussars, from which he was medically discharged before seeing active service, added: “What we are trying to do with Ukip is the future.”

A Ukip spokesman said Thomas was at Friday’s meeting “in the capacity of Mr Robinson’s personal security”.

He added: “Mr Thomas is not part of Ukip’s planning team. He has served his sentence and has returned to the world of work just as Lords Archer and Ahmed have returned to the House of Lords after serving serious criminal convictions.”

Daily Telegraph

Matthew Pond carried out the racist abuse at the pub his own mother runs in Ilkeston

Mathew pond pictured leaving court in Derby (Image: Derby Telegraph)

Mathew pond pictured leaving court in Derby (Image: Derby Telegraph)

A drunk man racially-abused a police officer who had been called to a bonfire party at the defendant’s own mother’s Derbyshire pub.

A court heard how Matthew Pond asked the Asian officer “Have you been to prayers, today?” before repeatedly chanting “EDL, EDL” at him in reference to the far-right political group the English Defence League.

Emma Heath-Tilford, prosecuting, said the offence took place at The Bridge Inn, in Bridge Street, Cotmanhay, on November 5.

She said officers were asked to attend to Pond who was “being held down on the floor” by other pub goers due to his “aggressive behaviour”.

‘Clearly intoxicated’

Miss Heath-Tilford said: “He was outside by the bonfire, clearly intoxicated, shouting and swearing.

“Officers tried to talk to him to find out what was happening and he continued to shout and swear so they tried to put handcuffs on him.

“He was resisting them as they arrested him for being drunk and disorderly he turned to PC Atwal and asked him ‘What time did you go to prayers today?’

“Then, while they were waiting for transportation (to take the defendant into custody) he was repeatedly shouting ‘EDL, EDL’ which the officer took as a reference to the English Defence League.”

‘Indian ethnicity’

Miss Heath-Tilford told Southern Derbyshire Magistrates’ Court that PC Atwal is of Indian ethnicity and took what Pond was saying to him as “racial abuse”.

In a victim impact statement, which was read to the court, the officer said: “The language that was used towards me was horrific.

“I should not have to deal with this kind of abuse while on duty as a police officer when all I am trying to do is my job,”

Pond, 32, of Cotmanhay Road, Ilkeston, was arrested, taken into custody and the following day, when he was shown the police’s body camera footage of the incident, said he felt “embarrassed” about his behaviour outside the pub.

‘Extremely embarrassed’

He pleaded guilty to being drunk and disorderly and to using racially-aggravated abusive, insulting or threatening words or behaviour.

Colleen Webb, for Pond, said her client had written a letter to the court expressing his apologies to PC Atwal about what he said to him.

She said: “He is extremely remorseful and embarrassed.

“That evening he had been at a bonfire event at his mum’s pub and had too much to drink.

“Clearly something triggered his behaviour but he has little recollection of the rest of the evening.

“Since the incident he has had to build bridges with his mother because she owns the Bridge Inn and he has also received some unfortunate remarks (about the incident) on Facebook.”

Magistrates handed Pond a 12-month community order, with 100 hours’ unpaid work.

They also ordered him to pay £100 compensation to PC Atwal, £85 prosecution costs and an £85 victim surcharge.
Derby Telegraph

The man who groomed and murdered Blackpool girl Paige Chivers has been given a further jail term for subjecting two young children to a catalogue of vile physical and sexual abuse more than a decade before killing the vulnerable teen.

Robert Ewing, 66, was jailed for life in 2015 for the 2007 murder of 15-year-old Paige, whom he had exploited sexually.

Robert Ewing and Paige Chivers

Robert Ewing and Paige Chivers

It has since emerged that he terrorised a young girl and boy in the early 1990s, with one of the children as young as five.

He was given 15 years in jail after being found guilty of the latest offences at Preston Crown Court – but the court heard due to his ongoing 32-year sentence he is not eligible for parole until he is aged 92.

Judge Philip Parry said Ewing could appear “charming and beguiling” to other adults.

But he told the killer: “Behind closed doors with children you were a brutal, perverted and sadistic bully.

“Many would describe you as evil incarnate. You are in judgement a modern day monster.”

He said Ewing made the girl’s life “an utter misery” while treating the boy “like a play thing”.

The court heard he subjected the little boy to physical abuse by tying him up, throwing urine at him, defecating on his bed, throwing him around, dragging him by his hair and hitting him with a back scratcher.

He was found guilty of two counts of indecently assaulting the boy, and a count of child cruelty towards each of the children.

Some jurors were visibly distressed as they were then told he was responsible for Paige’s murder and other offences.

Ewing, wearing a bottle green jumper, sat with his arms folded gave no reaction as the girl, now a grown woman, stood in the witness box to tell the court how his depraved behaviour affected her.

She said: “He tried to rid me of my pride, my dignity, and my identity.

“He became a permanent image in my mind. I saw him all the time. I would wake up and I couldn’t breathe.”

She said she needed years of therapy to deal with the effects of her abuse, adding: “Now I know I can walk away from all of this and be free.”

The boy, in a statement, said: “I really believed when he made threats to kill me I thought he would do it.

“I was made to feel I must have been so naughty that Robert Ewing was punishing me for what I had done.”

The court previously heard how the child killer forced the girl to watch while he tortured the boy, who was just seven or eight-years-old at the time.

He would subject her to cold baths and would force her head under the water until she couldn’t breathe.

The girl, who was aged as young as nine, was frequently woken at night and made to crawl around and pick up fluff from the carpet.

The boy was also made to stand naked on a chair while Ewing watched him, and he would sexually assault him.

Previously prosecutor Robert Dudley told the jury: “He would be told that was what he got for being a dirty, disgusting thing.”

The court heard the boy’s headmaster raised concerns about rope burns on the boy’s wrists – caused by Ewing – but he was “too scared to tell the truth” and blamed them on another child.

A later police investigation saw Ewing convicted of two counts of gross indecency and one count of indecent assault at Wolverhampton Crown Court in 1995.

In 2007, Ewing, formerly of Kincraig Place, Bispham, was convicted of murdering Paige Chivers, who was last seen on August 23, 2007, at a bus stop in Ashfield Road, Bispham.

The 15-year-old’s body has never been found but Ewing was convicted of killing her in his flat after bloodstains were found.

He was also found guilty of perverting the course of justice.

During a search of Ewing’s flat in All Hallows Road, Bispham, police officers found a hoard of cuttings about the case and about the murder.

Blackpool Gazette.