The family of a teenage girl left with a pendent embedded in her face are furious her teenage attackers have escaped jail. The two girls and a boy, who cannot be named because they are all 16, were given referral orders or community sentences by magistrates.
The uncle of the victim, who has asked not to be named, said: "This was an horrific attack so it is disappointing that the perpetrators have escaped custodial sentences. It sends out the wrong message."
The victim had gone to a children's playground in Rochdale's Springfield park in June with her three young sisters, aged five to 11, and her sister-in-law, who was with her 18-month-old baby. They were confronted by one of the 16-year-old girls and Kirsty Leigh Hood, 19. The victim was subjected to verbal abuse, including chants of 'BNP'. The 16-year-old boy and another girl later approached the women and also became confrontational. When the boy mumbled something at the victim she told him to speak English, to which he responded: "I'm more British than you."
The boy then told one of the two girls to pull the victim's headscarf off, but she punched her in the face with such force that the pendant from her bracelet became embedded beneath the 17-year-old student's eye. She was taken to Rochdale Infirmary where the pendant was removed.
Hood, 19, of Yew Dale Gardens, Marland, was fined last month after admitting a public order offence. The girl who threw the punch had earlier pleaded guilty to causing actual bodily harm and was given a 10-month referral order by District Judge Paul Richardson at Rochdale magistrates after he heard the attack was her first offence. She will not have to pay costs or compensation as she is jobless and has no parental support.
Mr Richardson said: "It was the conclusion of a very ugly incident in a public park. Mercifully, the injury the victim sustained was not of a permanent nature, but for the victim was still a very alarming incident."
The 16 -year-old boy, who has 30 previous convictions for a catalogue of offences, admitted common assault at an earlier hearing and was given a nine month supervision order and placed under a curfew for two months. The second 16-year-old girl, who has 13 previous convictions and was involved in verbally abusing the victim alongside Hood, pleaded guilty to a public order offence earlier and was given a nine-month supervision order. Both their parents must pay £200 costs.
Manchester Evening News