A thuggish teen who pelted a disabled woman with flour and eggs before posing with her after the attack is now scared to even leave his home.
18-year-old Cohan Semple, from Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk, said he is ‘struggling to go outside’ because he has received death threats from numerous strangers after he viciously attacked 49-year-old Janice Morris with his friends.
The gang of five boys targeted the disabled woman while she was sitting on a park bench in the Suffolk market town, Bury St Edmunds.
The teens then posed for a sickening pic with the victim and shared it online, sparking a massive outrage leading to their arrest.
Semple, who turned 18 last week, is the only one of the gang to be named. The identities of other yobs haven’t been revealed due to their age.
Semple, who was pleaded guilty last week, told Sun Online: ‘I’m struggling to leave the house at the moment. Since those pictures have gone on Facebook, I’ve had death threats from random people.’
The teenager added that he was not ready to apologize for what he had done due to the threats he has been receiving.
During the trial at Ipswich Youth Court, prosecutor Wayne Ablett told the court how Semple and his friends attacked the vulnerable lady as she was calmly sitting in the park.
‘All of a sudden, a number of male youths appeared around her,’ Ablett said. ‘They all approached her and started asking her questions regarding drugs.
‘He (Semple) came from behind the bench and spat at her, with spit landing on her face. She said, “What did you do that for?” She recalls the boy laughing at her, then spitting at her again.’
Ablett said the boys then purchased flour and eggs from a nearby shop to throw at the woman.
‘These items were chucked at and thrown at her body, covering her completely in flour,’ Ablett said. ‘The boys were still laughing. She was spat at again and one of them had taken a photo of her. She heard one of them say, “We’re filming it”.’
Semple then took a picture of her and shared it on Snapchat, before posting a screenshot of the image on Facebook.
‘Effectively the whole world can see the photograph, which is quite humiliating for the victim in this case,’ Ablett continued.
The gang was arrested after the image went viral on the social media.
Ablett said: ‘He (Semple) agreed he was in the photo. When asked if he had taken the photo, he accepted he did.’
Defending the teen, Declan Gallagher, said: ‘Cohan Semple took the photograph and put it on his own Snapchat. One of his circle then took a screenshot of that, then it went onto Facebook, then it went beyond.’
Semple was pleaded guilty to using threatening, insulting and abusive words or behavior to cause distress, alarm or harassment.
The rest of the boys, all of whom are aged below 18, were also pleaded guilty to the same charges.
The youth court sentenced them to 12-month referral orders. Each of them was also ordered to pay £20 victim surcharge, £85 prosecution costs and £100 compensation to the victim.
Simon Islett, the presiding magistrate, told them how they would’ve easily got custodial sentences had they been a few years older.
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