A MAN has been spared jail after a plea for leniency from the victim of a racially aggravated assault during a night out in Bradford.

Paul Jackson, 39, of Gardener Square, Hipperholme, had pleaded guilty in magistrates court to racially aggravated assault causing actual bodily harm to a woman.

The assault occurred in the early hours of the morning on January 1, 2020, outside Envy nightclub in Bradford.

During sentencing at Bradford Crown Court on Friday, the prosecutor said Jackson and the victim had been in a brief relationship in 2015 resulting in the birth of a child.

The two met on a chance encounter at the nightclub when they were out celebrating the New Year.

The prosecutor said Jackson made a nuisance of himself in the bar and the victim and her friend left.

He followed and used racist language to describe the victim before punching her in the face.

She suffered a laceration to her lip, numbness and needed 10 stitches at Bradford Royal Infirmary.

He later sent her text messages containing racist language.

The injury healed but left the victim with a permanent scar, which she said made her feel "disgusting" and affected how she interacted with people.

Although she was frustrated by Jackson's behaviour, she asked the court to give him a suspended sentence, saying an immediate custodial sentence would hinder their relationship, which had been repaired, and would have a negative impact on his relationship with their child.

The judge, Recorder Tahir Khan, said: "It's an unusual situation where the victim of the crime doesn't want the offender to go to prison."

Jackson's solicitor told the court: "We are three years down the line. He bitterly regrets the incident and causing injury.

"They have repaired their relationship and he plays an active role in their child's upbringing. He takes his parental responsibilities very seriously.

"The racist language was said to be hurtful but he's not a racist.

"He's earns good money as a roofer and pays child maintenance.

"He's attended group therapy sessions and recognises there are issues to be addressed in his life."

In sentencing Jackson, Recorder Khan said: "This was an impulsive act on your part, you have no history of violence and you haven't offended for 17 years.

"You play a significant role in the life your child, you're gainfully employed and making contributions to your child.

"You've demonstrated that you've done everything you can to undo the damage you've caused that night.

"I need to make it clear what the sentence would have been - 10 months for the assault but with the racially aggravated element 12 months.

"I'm going to suspend that for 18 months, so you must be of good behaviour or that will activate and you will serve 12 months.

"I'm also going to sentence to do 140 hours of unpaid work for the community and you must enrol in a Building Better Relations programme.

"If you fail to comply with these elements you could go to prison.

"You also must pay a £149 court surcharge."


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